Final report from the safety investigation of a serious maritime accident – grounding of the motor vessel “Vera Su” on the Bulgarian coast on 20.09.2021

At 04:13:43 on 20.09.2021, the motor vessel “Vera Su”, navigating from the port of Yuzhniy, Ukraine to Varna, loaded with 2 837,201 mt Urea, missed a way point for joining in the Traffic Separation Scheme due to the falling asleep of the second officer and ran aground on the Bulgarian coast in the area of Yailata Protected Area.

The steep coast and the underwater rocks around the place of grounding, as well as the degraded weather situation, make it very difficult to access the ship and conduct a lightening and an operation of refloating the vessel.

Because of the holes in the hull, the vessel began to sink, which required evacuation of the crew ashore. There has been some pollution into the sea.

After several attempts, part of the cargo was discharged, the ship was lightered, pulled back from the shallow water and towed to the port of Varna.