Uruguay's navy has told Reuters that it is losing hope of rescuing the remaining 22 crew members from the Stellar Daisy after it sank in the South Atlantic on Friday some 3,700 kilometers off Uruguay's coast.
South Korean government sources told Yonhap news agency that two Filipino crew members were rescued from a life raft on Saturday by a commercial ship, but only empty lifeboats, fuel and debris have been found since then.
“The more hours pass, the less the chances are of finding them,” spokesman for the Uruguayan Navy Gaston Jaunsolo told Reuters.
He added that a Brazilian plane had flown over the area on Sunday morning and an Argentine war ship was due to join the search efforts after it was said that the ship had split in two and sank.
The Stellar Daisy, owned and operated by South Korea's Polaris Shipping based in Busan, was carrying 260,000 tonnes of iron ore bound for China from Brazil.
A text message was sent to the ship operator on Friday from a member of the crew that said the ship was taking on water on the port side and was listing rapidly, according to Yonhap.
It is currently not yet known why the ship sunk but there is speculation that the Stellar Daisy could have lost stability and sank through a cargo shift as liquefied nickel has been documented to have caused ore bulk carriers to become unbalanced.