Eight crew members of a Bolivian-flagged tugboat who are stranded in Halifax on their cockroach-infested vessel are appealing to the public for help to fly home to Central America.
The Mission to Seafarers is trying to raise $12,000 to $15,000 to help the men return to their families in Honduras and El Salvador.
Maggie Whittingham-Lamont, seafarer co-ordinator at the mission, said the men are desperate to return to their families after going four weeks without pay or supplies on the aging tug.
The captain of the Craig Trans said federal inspectors detained the vessel after it entered Halifax Harbour on Dec. 18.
“It’s been nearly a month now. They’re accruing debt while away so our greatest wish is to raise money to send them home,” Whittingham-Lamont said in an interview on Monday.
Capt. Milton Tabora said Transport Canada detained the vessel due to safety deficiencies that range from water seeping through the decks to engine problems.
He said the vessel began its voyage in Central America and was travelling along the Nova Scotia coast to Montreal when a North Atlantic storm caused the crew to seek refuge in Halifax Harbour.