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Reports say the bulk carrier collided with the fishing boat several times in the vicinity of Occidental Mindoro over the weekend.

Initial investigation by the the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) found the collision not deliberate, but the Hong Kong crew were found to have committed negligence that may lead to civil and criminal liability, CNN Philippines reported.

Namely, according to PCG Commandant Vice Admiral George Ursabia, Jr., the crew of the Vienna Wood sent the distress call via email three hours after the incident. In addition, while they did not abandon the area, they failed to provide assistance to the fishing vessel crew.

He said the time frame would have been crucial in the rescue of the 14 Filipinos onboard who remain missing as of Tuesday afternoon.

Search and rescue operations will continue until Wednesday.