MOSCOW – A Russian fishing trawler sank Monday in the northern Barents Sea and 17 of its crew are still missing, emergency officials said. Two other crew members have been rescued.
According to a statement by the Russian Investigative Committee, the vessel with 19 crew members on board capsized and sank on Monday morning. A criminal probe into the incident has been launched and a search operation is underway.
Several vessels and an aircraft have been deployed to look for the missing crew members, Russian news agencies reported.
Russia’s Emergency Ministry initially suggested that an accumulation of the ice on the trawler could have caused it to sink, but later said the vessel was more likely to have heeled over while pulling up the fishing nets, "scooped up water and sank.”