Eleven sailors out of the twelve rescued from a Hong Kong-registered cargo vessel that sank in waters off Jeju Island on early Wednesday are reportedly unconscious.
According to the Coast Guard's Jeju branch, 12 out of 22 sailors aboard the Jin Tian wood freighter have been found so far. The ship sank in international waters some 148 kilometers southeast of Seogwipo.
The vessel transmitted its first manually operated distress signal via the Digital Selective Calling(DSC) system at around 1:45 a.m. Wednesday. About an hour later, the ship's captain notified the Coast Guard via satellite phone their intent to abandon the vessel.
Then, at around 3:07 a.m., the cargo ship sent a distress signal via the emergency position indicating radio beacon(EPIRB), which is normally activated after a ship sinks.
At the time of the sinking, there reportedly were fourteen Chinese nationals and eight people from Myanmar on board.
The Coast Guard, which is conducting a joint search and rescue operation with its Japanese counterpart, said the rescued sailors are expected to be transported to Japan's Nagasaki region.