Ocean carrier Hapag-Lloyd reported Friday that a cargo fire has broken out on the deck of the boxship Yantian Express. The blaze began in one container and has since spread to others, and the full extent is not yet known.
The 7,500 TEU Yantian Express is operating on Hapag-Lloyd’s East Coast Loop 5 (EC5) service and is under way from Colombo, Sri Lanka to Halifax, Nova Scotia. She is presently located about 650 nm off Canada’s eastern coast.
Hapag-Lloyd reports that the vessel’s eight officers and 15 seafarers are unharmed, and they remain on board. According to the carrier it is still too early to make a precise estimate of the damage to the vessel or its cargo.
Efforts to extinguish the fire in the containers were launched immediately, but these operations had to be suspended due to a deterioration of the weather conditions. According to German media, the master has ordered the vessel turned into the wind to prevent the spread of the fire.