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The Strange Case of the UK's Ghost Ships

Investigating the Eerie Phenomenon of Abandoned Vessels

By Seenu vasanPublished 5 days ago 3 min read
Investigating the Eerie Phenomenon of Abandoned Vessels

The British Ghost Ships Story of 2019: An Eerie Mystery of the High Seas

In late 2019, a series of strange events occurred off the coast of the United Kingdom, involving a number of abandoned ships drifting aimlessly in the North Sea. Dubbed the "ghost ships" by the media, the mystery of their origin and purpose captured the public's imagination and sparked a flurry of speculation and debate. In this article, we'll take a closer look at the British ghost ships story of 2019 and try to unravel the enigma behind this eerie phenomenon.

The first reported sighting of a ghost ship came in early December 2019, when a tanker ship named the MT Stena IceMAX spotted an unmanned vessel drifting in the North Sea. The vessel, which was later identified as the Alta, had been abandoned by its crew over a year earlier and had been adrift ever since. The Alta, a 77-meter cargo ship built in 1976, had been traveling from Greece to Haiti when it suffered engine failure and was left stranded off the coast of West Africa. The crew was eventually rescued, but the Alta was left behind, a ghost ship wandering the seas.

But the Alta was just the beginning. Over the following weeks, more abandoned vessels were spotted in the same area, including the MV Tigris and the MV Kuzma Minin. The MV Tigris, a 183-meter cargo ship, had been detained by Iranian forces in 2019 and was released after several months in captivity. However, instead of heading back to its original destination in Turkey, the ship was apparently sold and set sail for an unknown destination. It was eventually spotted drifting off the coast of Scotland, unmanned and adrift.

The MV Kuzma Minin, a 180-meter cargo ship, had been anchored off the coast of Falmouth in the UK when it broke loose from its moorings during a storm in December 2018. The ship was eventually towed to safety, but it was deemed unseaworthy and was left in the port for repairs. However, in December 2019, the MV Kuzma Minin was once again on the move, this time drifting in the North Sea with no crew on board.

The sudden appearance of these ghost ships raised many questions and sparked a range of theories about their origin and purpose. Some speculated that they were part of a sophisticated smuggling operation, with the ships being used to transport drugs, weapons, or other illicit goods. Others suggested that they were being used as part of an insurance scam, with the owners intentionally abandoning the vessels to collect on insurance payouts.

However, as investigations into the matter continued, it became clear that the truth was far less dramatic. In fact, the ghost ships were simply the result of a combination of factors, including mechanical failures, financial troubles, and bureaucratic red tape.

The MV Tigris, for example, had been sold to a company in Egypt, but the new owners had been unable to secure the necessary permits and paperwork to sail the vessel out of the UK. As a result, the ship had been left unmanned and adrift, with no one able to take responsibility for it.

The MV Kuzma Minin, on the other hand, had been sold for scrap, but the new owners had been unable to secure a tow to take the vessel to the scrapyard. As a result, the ship had simply been left in the port, where it had broken loose during a storm and drifted out to sea.

As for the Alta, the ghost ship that started it all, it was eventually towed to shore in Ireland

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