Written by Zulfick Farzan
21 May, 2021 | 11:30 am
COLOMBO (News 1st); The fire aboard the container ship ‘X-PRESS PEARL’ was controlled to a great extent, said Navy Spokesperson Captain Indika De Silva on Friday (21).
He said yellow smoke was observed on Thursday (20) from one area of the vessel and it was determined the smoke was the result of a chemical reaction between chemicals aboard the vessel and rainwater.
A fire broke out aboard the vessel later on Thursday (20) and the Sri Lanka Navy dispatched 02 Offshore Patrol Vessels, Sri Lanka Naval Ship (SLNS) Sagara, SLNS Sindurala and a Fast Attack Craft to the scene of fire.
Further 01Tug from the Sri Lanka Ports Authority (SLPA) is engaged in firefighting efforts as of now.
The container ship was in anchorage about 9.5 nautical miles northwest of Colombo harbour as the incident was reported.
The vessel which is registered under the flag of Singapore has carried 1486 containers with 25 tons of Nitric Acid, several other chemicals and cosmetics from the port of Hazira, India on 15th May 2021.
The ship faced this unfortunate occurrence while in anchorage about 9.5 nautical miles off Colombo harbour, having arrived to the location on 19th May before its entry into the harbour.
The distressed container ship has been manned by a crew of 25, who are Philippine, Chinese, Indian and Russian nationals.
Meanwhile, special team comprising Sri Lanka Navy and Ports Authority (SLPA) personnel got onboard the ship in the evening (20th) and inspected the situation onboard ship where they suspected that the fire was erupted due to a reaction to the chemicals being transported on the ship.
Further, special teams of the Navy and Sri Lanka Coast Guard remain standby to respond to possible emergency situation and the SLPA Tug is currently engaged to smother the flames erupted.
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