Greek tanker smashes Istanbul restaurants

Turkish maritime authorities were yesterday interviewing the officers and crew of a Greek tanker carrying thousands of tons of toxic fuel oil that ploughed into a group of floating restaurants in Istanbul late on Tuesday, sinking one vessel and damaging another three. Greece’s Merchant Marine Ministry yesterday said the Polyxeni I was carried off course by strong currents in the Bosporus, striking the restaurants around 10 p.m. Twelve Greek and 14 Filipino seamen were on board. Nobody was injured on the floating restaurants, while none of the Polyxeni’s 23,000 tons of fuel oil leaked into the sea. According to reports from Turkey, after the collision the tanker resumed its course and had to be stopped by local maritime authorities. The Polyxeni had sailed from a Georgian port and was headed for Mombasa. Accidents are commonplace in the congested waterway.