SMT Emar Offshore



13 June began as a routine day for Captain Jaap de Goede and the crew of tug boat E-Two, a vessel owned in partnership between SMT Shipping and Emar Offshore Services. The tug was on the way to Fujairah, UAE when they received a mayday call from MV Front Altair, one of two oil tankers attacked that day in the Gulf of Oman. Captain de Goede received orders to assist the burning Front Altair because the tug was the only vessel in the area with firefighting equipment. After sailing for three hours to Front Altair’s location, E-Two arrived to witness the tanker still burning at full blaze. According to Captain de Goede, “the scene made a huge impression on the crew, as nobody had ever seen such a big fire before”.

Under normal conditions, a burning vessel is assisted by many firefighting boats to attack the fire from numerous angles. In this case, however, the E-Two was on its own. Despite this, the atmosphere onboard remained calm and professional. Once E-Mar operations and Smit Salvage gave the green light to proceed, E-Two carefully approached upwind of the burning tanker and began to exinguish the fire. The crew remained on high alert as they battled the fire alone for almost 30 hours when they were finally joined by additional support.

The actions taken by E-Two’s crew were truly heroic. As Captain de Goede himself explained, “As Master, I am convinced that due to the professional approach and correct use of all available resources and equipment, a big enviornmental and economic disaster (was) prevented. Thanks to all involved in this operation and special thanks to the crew...for their brave approach and their steadfast commitment to their duties”. SMT Shipping is sincerely grateful to Captain de Goede and his crew for their remarkable bravery and professionalism.