9,600-TEU APL ship on fire en route from Shenzhen to S'pore
THE Singapore-flagged 9,600-TEU APL Vancouver has been hit by fire on its on cargo deck as the ship was en route from Shenzhen to Singapore and had to head into to Vietnamese waters
03 February 2019 - 19:00
It sailed into obscure Vung Ro Bay in Phu Yen Province, where the Vietnamese Coast Guard organised fire fighting operations. It is understood that a salvage company has already been contracted.
Now a unit of French shipping giant CMA CGM, APL, the operator of the ship, reported that fire broke out in one of the cargo holds about 4.30am January 31, whereupon emergency response procedures were activated by the crew.
All 24 crewmen were reportedly in good health, and no pollution has been reported.
The International Union of Marine Insurance (IUMI) has warned that the design and fire fighting arrangements of modern container ships can make cargo fires difficult to address, noted Fort Lauderdale's Maritime Executive.
'Once established, a fire can be virtually impossible to get under control,' asserted Nick Haslam, group director of shipping services for LOC, in a recent post for IUMI.
'This is because of a combination of factors; restricted access to the cargo stow where many of the fires have started and the sheer size and scale of an ultra large container vessel (ULCV), together with inadequate crew training and equipment.'
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