I think pilotage is mandatory over a certain size. Sure they would've had one on board. Guess would be some sort of steering issue looking at the way they just kept turning but the article says they don't think it was a technical problem. Very strange. Unless they were in autopilot and it couldn't handle the current. We have had issues with that there and consequently usually do it in hand steering. But even if the autopilot did throw its hand in you should still have enough time to get a man on the wheel and get it back. Unless they weren't paying attention.