Kota Kinabalu – An emergency rescue will be launched by the Royal Malaysian Navy to fly two navy men from sea back to shore using the Super Lynx helicopter.
One of them is from the assault boat CB204 that drifted in the open sea after engine and steering failure since Sunday while the other is from KD Paus that is towing the troubled vessel back to shore here.
Navy Chief Tan Sri Abdul Aziz Jaafar said the two men reportedly needed urgent medical attention and a team is being scrambled to send the navy Super Lynx helicopter to extract them at sea.
The assault boat with its seven crew members are being towed by rescue ship KD Paus back to the Kota Kinabalu Naval Base in Sepanggar and are due to arrive tomorrow evening.
Aziz had said bad weather is hindering efforts to bring the boat back as it is being towed at a slow pace, moving at a speed of between 6.5km to 8.5km per hour.
The rescue ship KD Paus was estimated to take up to 35 hours from the point where it began towing the naval boat about 240km from here and would probably arrive at about 7pm, he had said.
Strong winds and heavy rains brought by the south westerly winds pounded the west coast of Sabah for about four days now and would continue until tomorrow according to the Meteorological Department.
Earlier, another navy vessel KD Ganas had reached the crew in distress at about 7.12pm last night and found them safe after the boat stalled due to engine and steering problems on Sunday at about 11.15am.
After the assault vessel was declared missing on Sunday, a search and rescue was mounted involving the navy, Royal Malaysian Air Force and Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency.
Three aircrafts and six vessels were deployed along the west coast. – NST