Update (Tues. 7/24/12): Blaze Contained on MSC Flaminia
Update (Mon., 7/23/12): The third tug, Carlo Magno, reached the burning MSC Flaminia over the weekend. Since then, the first tug on scene, the Fairmount Expedition, has begun to tow the MSC Flaminia toward Europe as the Anglian Sovereign continues to fight the fire. An update Monday morning indicates that the MSC Flaminia’s own firefighting system has been helpful in cooling the area in front of the superstructure. The vessel is now listing by 10 degrees, 1.5 degrees greater than it was on Friday.
Friday Update: A team of salvage specialists has boarded the MSC Flaminia containership that has been burning in the mid-Atlantic since an explosion erupted in the one of the vessels cargo holds on Saturday.
The team of four salvors have been successful at reactivating the ships own firefighting system and has also provide an initial assessment of damage to the vessel. The salvors reported considerable damage, especially to cargo holds 4 – where the fire originated from -, 5 and 6. Cargo hold 7, which is located adjacent to the superstructure, is not on fire. Operator of the MSC Flaminia, Reederei NSB, maintains that the superstructure itself, the engine room, and the bow and stern sections – including the steering gear – have all not affected by the fire. Due to damaged cargo and extinguishing water the ship is listing by 8.5 degrees.
Salvage company Smit currently has two firefighting tugs on scene. The 16,320 BHP tug, Fairmount Expedition (pictured right), reached the burning box ship on Tuesday and Anglian Sovereign arrived Friday morning and immediately commenced firefighting operations. A third tug, the Carlo Magno, is expected to arrive at the site on Saturday. As of Friday, both tugs, along with the MSC Flaminia’s own system, are all supporting firefighting.
As gCaptain has reported earlier, the three crewmembers who were injured in the initial blast are receiving treatment for their wounds. The latest updates indicate that two less injured crewmembers are being treated in Azores and one with more serious injuries has been transferred to a burn unit in Portugal. One crewmember died soon after the blast from his injuries. A second crewmember remains missing and is presumed to have been killed in the explosion.
The 18 uninjured crewmembers and two passengers arrived in Falmouth, UK on Wednesday on board the oil tanker DS Drwon.
The latest estimates indicate that the firefighting operations on the MSC Flaminia “could take some weeks”.