Margate RNLI lifeboats and tug ready to assist refloat of cargo ship aground at Fulsam Rock

Photo Ben Cooper

Margate RNLI’s two lifeboats and tug are on standby to help refloat the 75-metre cargo ship which ran aground by Margate’s Turner Contemporary in the early hours of this morning (October 8).

The Islay Trader was transporting a load of broken glass from Purfleet to Antwerp when she dragged anchor and ran aground at the Fulsam Rock – just metres away from the Antony Gormley ‘man’ sculpture – at 3am.

 Photo Lyn Hurley Edwards

The vessel, which has six crew onboard, is due to be refloated when the tide is high enough at around 2.20pm.

The ship’s agent has arranged for a tug from Medway to take part in the operation.

Photo Ben Cooper

Turner Contemporary staff say measures are being taken to protect the sculpture.

In a statement from the gallery it says: “We are monitoring the situation closely and working with the Coastguard and the Harbour Master to minimise any potential damage.”

Photo Ian Holmes

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency says there is no pollution or damage to fuel tanks.

UPDATE: 2.18pm – The Islay Trader is reportedly starting to move. Thanks to Frank Leppard for photos (below)

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