October 24 (Reuters) – A fire broke out on containers aboard a cargo ship carrying mining chemicals off British Columbia on Saturday, and the Canadian Coast Guard said it was working with the Coast Guard United States to assess the situation, including environmental risks.
Sixteen crew members were evacuated from the MV Zim Kingston, while five remained on board to fight the blaze, the Coast Guard said in a statement Saturday evening.
Ten containers were currently burning, he added, adding that the fire continued to spread but the ship itself was not on fire.
The agency said it was working with its US counterpart to track 40 containers that have fallen overboard, saying they pose a significant risk to mariners.
“Mariners are advised to stay clear of the area. Currently, there is no risk to the safety of people ashore, but the situation will continue to be monitored. “
Video obtained by Reuters showed a fire descending from the ship’s deck into the water.
Zim Kingston reported on Friday that it had encountered bad weather west of the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
“It is extremely worrying. The ship and containers are very close to Victoria, British Columbia, and a big storm is forecast tonight. We (…) fear that it is about a new environmental disaster ”, declared David Boudinot, president of Surfrider. Canada Foundation, an environmental organization.
Eikon Refinitiv data shows that the Maltese-flagged Zim Kingston is operated by the Cypriot company Danaos Shipping Co Ltd.
Reporting by Bhargav Acharya, Chris Helgren and Nur-Azna Sanusi Editing by Edwina Gibbs and Frances Kerry
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