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Container ship fire burning off Canada’s east coast now ‘largely contained’; Cargo ship runs aground off coast of Virginia Beach

Container ship fire burning off Canada’s east coast now ‘largely contained’
January 10, 2019

A fire that has been burning for a week aboard a container ship off Canada’s east coast is now said to be “largely contained” and under control.

The German shipping company Hapag-Lloyd says five crew members were transferred back to the Yantian Express on Wednesday evening from one of the massive tugs fighting the fire.

It says the ship is 1,400 kilometres off the Canadian coast and is being slowly towed to port.

The 320-metre ship was travelling to Halifax from Colombo, Sri Lanka, via the Suez Canal when a container caught fire on the forward deck on Jan 3.

After the fire spread to other containers, the ship was evacuated and two ocean-going tugs were dispatched to fight the blaze.

Hapag-Lloyd says a third tug is en route to the Yantian Express to assist, and is expected to arrive on Sunday.

The company says it is unable to estimate damage to the ship or its cargo.

Cargo ship runs aground off coast of Virginia Beach
January 10, 2019

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – The Coast Guard helped the crew of a bulk carrier ship after it ran aground about 2.5 miles east of Virginia Beach, Thursday morning.

Crew members aboard the JSW Salem, a 958-foot bulk carrier, contacted Sector Hampton Roads watchstanders in Portsmouth after the ship ran aground near Cape Henry Buoy #4, Coast Guard officials said.

The ship’s crew reported there were 120,000 metric tons of coal and 26 people aboard the ship.

A 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew from Station Little Creek launched and arrived on scene to assist. An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Elizabeth City, North Carolina, also launched to conduct an overflight of the scene.

The JSW Salem was able to refloat with the rising tide and the RB-M crew escorted the ship to an anchorage about 1 mile off Virginia Beach.

“Our top priority is always the safety of life,” said Capt. Kevin Carroll, commander of Sector Hampton Roads. “Preserving the environment and protecting maritime commerce are also some of our top priorities. We are pleased there were no injuries or pollution reported during this incident, and I applaud our Coast Guard crews and first responders that sprang into action to successfully resolve this incident.”