The ship got in distress 148 miles off Cape Ortegal in the Bay of Biscay on Jan 26, 2016. A "push-button" alarm had been raised by the crew at 12:15 p.m. GMT and the signal was picked up by the medium frequency (MF) detection System of the Falmouth Coastguard.
The crew of 22 was evacuated by three helicopters and an aircraft of the Spanish Search Rescue in an operation coordinated by the Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre (MRCC) in Falmouth.
Salvamento Marítimo mobilized a Helimer 401 helicopter, a 102 aircraft and the helicopter Xunta Pesca II. The Helimer hoisted 16 castaways and transported them to A Coruña.
The Pesca rescued six men who were flown to Celeiro. The Rescue Coordination Center at Finisterre initially also mobilized a Helimer 207 from Gijon which, however, could be stood down. Six Good Samaritans which also had served for communication could be released four hours after the initial distress call at 12.15 p.m. which was sent when the ship was listing 25 ° to starboard.
When the carrier lost part of its cargo, it suddenly heeled 40 °, the engine failed and could not be started again. Besides cars and 10 trucks, the ship also had on board 3600 tons of timber.
The abandoned carrier was drifting in the vicinity of 46.11.2N 008.01.9 W 22, posing a hazard to navigation.
Weather on scene was force 8 south-westerly winds and very high seas with heavy waves. The ship was enroute from from Gabon to Le Havre, ETA Jan 27.
The vessel has now drifted into the French S&R area and was being dealt with by the French authorities. The maritime prefect of the Atlantic gave notice to the owner to stop the ship before Jan 28th at 9 a.m. (GMT + 1).