A Maharashtra coastal police speedboat that was brought from Ratnagiri to help patrol Mumbai’s coastline during US President Barack Obama’s visit, was damaged after it crashed into a capsized merchant ship near the lighthouse at Colaba on Sunday night.
The speedboat, Sagar Shakti, was returning to Ratnagiri after the three-day bandobast off the Gateway of India when the accident took place. According to the Versova Sagri police, there were no injuries reported. The boat is now being repaired at the Ghadiyal docks in Mumbai.
The boat was one of the six speedboats that the Mumbai coastal police had borrowed from the Ratnagiri, Thane and Vashi police. On Sunday night, after bandobast duty, the speedboat was on its way for refuelling at the Ghadiyal docks when it rammed into a ship submerged more than 20 years ago.
“The driver from Ratnagiri did not know the sea route of the Mumbai coast and could not see the part of the ship in the darkness,” said Shivaji Jadhav, senior inspector of Versova Sagri police station.
The speedboat had an inspector and four other personnel, including the driver, on board the boat for bandobast duty. When asked whether there were floating markers around the submerged ship, Jadhav said the ship was visible by the naked eye.
The incident was registered at the Sagri police station. Qaiser Khalid, deputy commissioner of police (port zone), said the vessel had sprung a leak after the accident.
“We noticed a hole at the bottom of the boat through which water had started entering,” he said.