The Mystery of a Missing Taiwanese Squid Boat Deepens

This month, the mystery of what happened to a 700 tonne missing Taiwanese squid boat with a crew of 49 deepened. Her Captain last contacted his company at 3 a.m. on the morning of February 26th. He reported that the boat was taking on water; however, he did not issue a Mayday distress call and apparently left no GPS coordinates. The Hsiang Fu Chun today remains missing somewhere in the South Atlantic, about 1700 miles off the Falkland Islands.

The Taiwanese government has requested assistance from both the British government and the Argentinian government in locating the vessel. Many people in Taiwan speculate the power failed and the craft is adrift in the South Atlantic. Timber Creek Capital reports that there is also speculation the crew perhaps hijacked the vessel.

The 28 year old ship carried a captain from Taiwan, two other Taiwanese crew members, two crew members from Vietnam, 13 Filipinos, 21 Indonesians and 11 Chinese. It was one of approximately 100 squid fishing boats from Taiwan that annually sail into the South Atlantic to troll the waters for squid.

A spokesman for the Taiwanese Fisheries Agency, Hung Hong-yen noted: “We still don’t know where the ship is and what happened to it.” He added that locating the vessel right now “is like searching for a needle in the ocean.” The ship vanished in a remote area of the South Atlantic, 11 hours from land via airplane.

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