Jennifer digs up the facts for us…
Social media post: Crew of Iranian tanker alleges ‘missile attack’ in disabling Red Sea incident
At the beginning of May, a report came out in maritime-industry media that an Iranian oil tanker, M/V Happiness I, had lost both propulsion and steering in the Red Sea, and was in distress near the Saudi port of Jeddah. I thought that odd enough to look into at the time, given the ship’s identity, location, and comprehensive loss of maneuvering capability, which is relatively rare.
Happiness I (IMO 9212905; see here as well) was built in 2003 in South Korea and has been active ever since, including recently, so she is neither notably old nor likely to be out of proper maintenance. It’s more common to suffer either a steering or propulsion casualty, but both at once make for a radar blip that’s worth tracking.
At a maritime tracking website last week, I saw that Happiness I’s status was given as “not under command,” which in marine terms means a ship is unable because of exceptional circumstances to maneuver, and can’t keep out of the way of another vessel in accordance with the maritime “Rules of the Road.” That indicates comprehensive system failure.