According to German emergency services, the incident occurred Thursday evening, about 25 km northwest of Borkum. The incident involved the Paksoy 1, a 115 meter Turkish-flagged cargo ship with 16 crew members on board, and the Eems Cobalt, an 82 meter Dutch cargo vessel with five crew members onboard. The collision is feared to have caused serious damage, creating a hole in the Eems Cobalt's hull and leading to water ingress.
Several German search and rescue ships, tugboats and police boats, as well as anti-contamination boats have been deployed at the scene to pull the ships apart. The sea and airspace within three nautical miles of the collision have been blocked off. No injuries or pollution have been reported.
An amateur recording off a vessel-tracking site appears to show the moment of impact, with the Paksoy 1 shown making an attempt to pull off a rapid 180 degree turn before t-boning the Eems Cobalt.
The Paksoy 1 was on route to St. Petersburg, Russia from the Netherlands. The Eems Cobalt was headed from the Netherlands to Spain, carrying 1,800 tons of magnesium carbonate.