Rope accident kills young sailor

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Rope accident kills young sailor

One Navy officer was killed and four injured Friday in an accident involving a destroyer that returned home after a mission in waters off Somalia.

The accident occurred at 10:15 a.m. at a naval base in the southern port of Jinhae in South Gyeongsang, when a rope used to connect the 4,400-ton Choi Young destroyer to the dock snapped with a bang for an unknown reason, according to officials.

A welcoming ceremony was being held at the port to mark the safe return of the vessel that operated in the waters of the Gulf of Aden off Somalia on an anti-piracy mission for six months.

“The officers appear to have been injured as the rope hit them when it suddenly snapped,” a Navy officer said.

The five officers were taken to nearby hospitals after the accident. A 22-year-old petty officer second class, whose identity was withheld, died, with serious injuries to his face, officials said. He was set to be discharged from the military about one month later. Four others sustained non-life-threatening injuries to parts of their bodies, such as their arms.

The Navy will carry out an investigation to determine the cause of the accident. They belonged to the Cheonghae Unit that was stationed in waters off Somalia as the country’s first overseas anti-piracy naval unit.

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