26 Mar 2004

Five New Caledonia fishermen safe after hitting reef

3:29 pm on 26 March 2004

Authorities in New Caledonia say five fishermen are safe in Noumea after they were rescued near Belep in the north if the territory.

According to the Nouvelles Caledoniennes newspaper, the five were taken off their ship, the Melita, by helicopter after hitting a reef at night off the island of Pott.

The ship belongs to the Sofrana company and was fishing in the northern waters with another company vessel when they got into trouble in poor weather.

The exact cause of the accident is yet to be established.

According to press reports, it is also to be determined if the ship can be salvaged.