A Taiwanese container vessel collided with two Japanese fishing boats in Osaka Bay in western Japan yesterday, leaving one crewman on the fishing boat dead and another missing, Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesman Steve Hsia (夏季昌) said.
Hsia said all 21 crew members aboard the cargo vessel operated by Taiwan-based Wan Hai Lines were safe and that Taiwan’s representative office in Osaka was following up on the accident.
The collision, which took place in waters 5 nautical miles (9km) off the port of Osaka, caused the two Japanese fishing boats to capsize, Hsia said.
Three crew members aboard the Japanese boats were rushed to hospital for emergency treatment, but one of them died shortly after, Hsia said.
Japanese authorities are investigating the cause of the collision, he said.
Wan Hai spokesman Davis Kao (高國隆) said the company received information early yesterday that its container vessel Wan Hai 162 had collided with two Japanese fishing boats in Osaka Bay.
The Wan Hai 162 is a small-size freighter that can accommodate about 1,088 TEUs (6m containers), said Kao, who had no information on the cause of the collision. He said that since the accident took place in Japan, it would be investigated by the Japanese authorities, he added.
An AFP report quoted Japan Coast Guard officials as saying that all four people aboard the Japanese fishing boats were thrown into the water after the collision.