Investigation of how the product tanker Elli
broke its back at anchorage off Suez on Friday
is likely to probe whether there was a causal link
with a grounding involving the vessel
just a few weeks ago.
It has emerged that the 94,000 dwt tanker
ran aground on a sandbank off the coast of Yemen
in June and was refloated after several days.
Although there have been no reports of bottom damage
from the earlier incident,
the 23 year old vessel had to be towed to Suez
for a drydocking.
It is understood managers had concerns about the engine
and steering gear,
but the docking would also have permitted
a closer look at the hull.
Elli, managed by Worldwide Green Tankers of Greece,
suffered apparent hogging and split amidships.
A predominantly Filipino crew of 25,
headed by a Greek master and Ukrainian chief officer,
were safely evacutated,
and there was no pollution reported.
Thge vessel was in ballast but there was said to be 60 tonnes
of fuel oil in the engine room.