Eighteen still missing from Starlite Atlantic

Starlite Ferries-owned ropaxone of three ships hit by Typhoon Nina off Philippines.

Rescuers were still searching for 18 crew members after Typhoon Nina sank a ropax ferry off the Philippines.

The 1,500-gt Starlite Atlantic (built 1975) was one of three ship casualties reported as a result of the powerful storm, which clobbered the archipelago nation earlier this week.

Philippines Coast Guard spokesman Armand Balilo said 14 crewmen and from the Starlite Ferries-owned ship have been saved, according to CBS News.

Media reports have identified the dead passenger as  21-year-old Lyka Banaynal. Five helicopters are continuing the search for the remaining crewmen.

The ship went down off Batangas province on Monday. A spokesman for Starlite Ferries, Glenn Tabanao, told the Inquirer newspaper that the ropax was anchored off Batangas City when it was forced to seek shelter elsewhere.

Equasis lists the classification society for the Philippines-flag ship as unknown, and no insurer is listed in the database.

The 1,020-lane-metre Super Shuttle RoRo 5 (built 1980) ran aground off nearby Mabini during the storm, leading to the rescue of 25 crew members onboard.  A tanker identified only as the Obama also ran aground.

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