stormy night of 28th August 1994, Estonian shipping company
sank. 852 passengers
and crew members died, while 137 survived.
left the Tallinn
port, the wind was only 15-19 knots
per second) and visibility was good. When Estonia
left the coast, the weather
was getting worse. Wind accelerated to 29-39 knots (15-20 m/s) and wave
was 3-4 metres
Before and after 1 o’clock am passengers and crew members
heard some loud bangs.
visor broke at 1:15 and water started pouring in. People started to
Many passengers were trapped to their cabins. Estonia
sank at 1:30 but appeared
to the surface again. It finally disappeared from the nearby
ships’ radars at 1:50.
officers sent the first
at 1:22. It was first responded by Viking
Line’s cruiseferry Mariella.
Mariella was the nearest ship
sent the second mayday message at 1:24. Turku’s
Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre (MRCC) received it and took the
responsibility of rescue. Estonia’s
position was received at 1:29 and nearby ships headed to the accident
Silja Line’s Silja
The first helicopter left Turku
at 2:30. Mariella arrived to the accident scene at 2:12. Silja Europa
at 2:30 and the first helicopter at 3:05. There were totally 29 ships
helicopters operating at the accident scene. Ships rescued 34 and
104 persons. One of them died later.