ibnlive » India » Maharashtra

Sep 10, 2012 at 08:47am IST

Fire aboard cargo ship off the coast of Mumbai under control

New Delhi: The fire that erupted aboard a merchant ship off Mumbai's coast has been brought under control. The coastguard says the operation continued through the night and is still on. Hazardous chemicals on the MV Amsterdam Bridge had caught fire early on Sunday evening.

Four ships of the coastguard including the specialised Samudra Prahari are currently on the scene. DG shipping has also deployed an emergency towing vessel and two tug boats each from ONGC and SCI have also been pressed into service.

The ship was on its way to Colombo from Mumbai.

According to the sources, the operations room of the Coast Guard received a fire call at 5.15 pm from the captain of the cargo vessel.

The crew of the 54,405 tonne vessel is believed to be safe, the sources said.

Though the fire suspected to have started somewhere near the engine room, soon it spread to other parts, the officer said, adding that by late evening the middle portion of the ship had caught fire.

The vessel carried hazardous and noxious substance (HNS), which signifies that it is carrying substance, apart from oil, which, when released into marine environment, will have detrimental effect on the human and marine life.

The HNS has made the fire-fighting and rescue operation more difficult for the Coast Guard. The ship had reached the Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust on September 8 and left for Colombo after loading the containers. It was supposed to reach Colombo on Tuesday.

The officers said it is only after extinguishing the fire, the estimate of the damage can be evaluated.

With additional information from PTI