9.30am AEDT Saturday 04 January 2014
Aurora Australis released from tasking in Antarctica
Xue Long’s attempt to manoeuvre through the ice early this morning was unsuccessful. Xue Long has confirmed to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) it is beset by ice.
The Master of Xue Long has confirmed to AMSA that the ship is safe, it is not in distress and does not require assistance at this time. There is no immediate danger to personnel on board the Xue Long. The Xue Long has advised AMSA it has food supplies for several weeks. The Aurora Australis was placed on standby by AMSA’s Rescue Coordination Centre Australia (RCC Australia) last night to remain in open water in the area as a precautionary measure.
The Masters of both Akademik Shokalskiy and Xue Long agree that further assistance from Aurora Australis is no longer required and they will be able to provide mutual support to each other. The Aurora Australis has been released from search and rescue tasking by RCC Australia early this morning and continues to make its passage to the Casey base to complete a resupply. It will then continue to Hobart. RCC Australia will maintain regular contact with the Xue Long and Akademik Shokalskiy.