All 27 crewmen were missing today
after an oil tanker broke in two and caught fire
in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean in stormy weather.
Rescue officials said a Canadian Forces plane
that flew over the area reported no sign of the
15 Greeks and 12 Hondurans on board the British-owned tanker Odyssey.
They saw two burned and empty lifeboats, the officials said.
They said a Soviet weather ship that went to the area saw only one empty lifeboat.
has been no sightings of survivors,'' Maj. Phil MacMillan of the search
and rescue co-ordination center in Halifax said. Ship Breaks Up, Oil
The 65,000-ton Odyssey, registered in Liberia, broke in
half on Wednesday night 900 miles off the coast of Newfoundland in the
Atlantic. It was carrying a million barrels of crude oil.
The disaster occurred in winds of 44 miles an hour and waves up to 25 feet.
After breaking up, the ship caught fire, as did oil leaking from the vessel.
Major MacMillan said a small portion of the ship's bow protruded from the oil slick,
which is 3 miles wide and 10 miles long.
said that although the slick was heading toward England, it should
dissipate before reaching land. Flames Keep Weather Ship Away
The Odyssey, built in 1971 and owned by Polem Bros. of London, left the
Shetland Islands off Scotland on Nov. 5, bound for a refinery at
The tanker sent out a distress signal late Wednesday
that was picked up by Valentia Radio in southern Ireland
and relayed to the British search and rescue base in Falmouth, England.
The Soviet weather ship, the Passat, traveled 26 miles
to the scene, but was unable to get closer than about a mile because of
The Canadian Forces plane that flew over the area later reported the fire had died out.
It was the second time this year that a tanker had broken in two and
burned in the mid-Atlantic. In April, a Greek tanker went down off
Newfoundland's shore, killing all 24 Polish crewmen and 5 of their
The Odyssey's agent in Newfoundland, Chris Clancy, said
it would have been the first trip to Come-by-Chance for the ship, which
was previously named the Oriental Phoenix.