Bulk Carrier Adrift in Atlantic Ocean After Fire

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On August 13, a fire reportedly erupted in the cargo hold of a bulk carrier and remains adrift off Las Palmas in the Canary Islands, Atlantic Ocean.

What happened?

The bulk carrier ‘Cheshire’ was enroute from Norway to Thailand when it reportedly caught fire. The bulker was loaded with 40,000 tons of ammonium nitrate used as a fertilizer.

On August 13, the vessel sought permission to enter the port of Las Palmas but was denied entry.

Subsequently on August 14, an explosion was heard from the cargo hold no.4 and thick smoke was seen billowing from the ship and a fire alarm was raised by the crew members onboard the vessel.

Crew members rescued:

The 24 crew members of the bulk carrier were safely evacuated by a couple of SAR helicopters. The cause of the fire is believed to have started due to a chemical reaction in the fertilizer that caused it to overheat.

Vessel remains adrift:

The vessel remains currently adrift in the Atlantic Ocean a few hundred miles south of Grand Canary Island.

The ship owner has hired the services of the rescue company ‘Resolve Salvage’ to retrieve the vessel. The SAR tug ‘Puntas Salinas’ is reportedly on scene with the Chesire.

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Source: Naucher

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