Bulk Carrier Explosion Off Cape Cod: 1 Dead, 3 Seriously Burned



One crew member was killed and three others suffered massive burns in an explosion Monday aboard a 623-foot international coal ship bound for Portugal from Baltimore, the U.S. Coast Guard said.

What happened?

The Tamar, a Marshall Islands-flagged bulk carrier, was about 1,300 miles offshore of Cape Cod, Mass., at 7 a.m., when the captain called the Coast Guard to report the explosion, officials said. The fire from the explosion, which occurred in the forward storeroom, has been extinguished, and the cause is not yet known.

The ship arrived in Baltimore on April 14 and tied up at a coal terminal until sailing back down the Chesapeake Bay on Easter Sunday, according to John Colgan, vice president of the Association of Maryland Pilots, whose members guide ships into port. Colgan said he did not know of any problems during the ship’s time in Maryland.

Crew rescued:

The New York Air National Guard’s 106th Rescue Wing launched Monday an HC-130 aircrew with six para-rescuers and one combat rescue officer to provide aid to the injured crew members, according to the Coast Guard, which called in partner agencies for the response. That plane was expected to reach the Tamar with a small boat and advanced life-saving equipment about 6:30 p.m.

The Canadian Coast Guard has also diverted two warships with physician assistants aboard; they were expected to arrive to lend aid sometime after midnight, the U.S. Coast Guard said.

The incident did not affect the ship’s engineering plant, and the ship will continue sailing to the Azores, Portugal. The Portuguese Coast Guard will assume authority for coordinating a response once the ship sails east of 1,300 miles.

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Source: Patch


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