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Investigation under way into fire aboard decommissioned ship at Port of Cape Town

The ship reported on fire at the Port of Cape Town on Tuesday morning was a dead scrap vessel in the process of being demolished. Picture: African News Agency (ANA) Archives

The ship reported on fire at the Port of Cape Town on Tuesday morning was a dead scrap vessel in the process of being demolished. Picture: African News Agency (ANA) Archives

Published May 11, 2022

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Cape Town – A plume of smoke temporarily halted operations at the Port of Cape Town on Tuesday morning when a fire was reported on board the vessel MF Shinsei Maru No 3 berthed at Quay 700.

The ship was a dead scrap vessel in the process of being demolished.

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According to Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA), the MF Shinsei Maru No3 had caught alight while it was being demolished.

The vessel has no crew on board and the seven workmen who were cutting the bulk vessel were safely evacuated.

The Port of Cape Town fire department, three harbour tugs, and the City of Cape Town fire department immediately responded to extinguish the fire.

City of Cape Town’s Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson, Jermaine Carelse, said that crews from Roeland Street, Brooklyn, Epping, Salt River and Milnerton were at the scene on Tuesday morning.

“The seat of the fire was located in the cold storage area where it appears to have been insulation that was burning. A tug boat also assisted with the firefighting efforts, and was withdrawn just after 10.30am.

“The incident was brought under control and extinguished at 12.07pm. No injuries were reported,” Carelse said.

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Transnet National Ports Authority said the cause of the fire was under investigation.

“Due to visibility challenges as a result of the fire smoke, Cape Town Container Terminal operations were briefly suspended, resulting in two vessels being impacted, one scheduled to dock and the other container vessel working cargo alongside Quay 601.

“Other port operations are continuing as normal with the situation being closely monitored.

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“TNPA Port of Cape Town has invoked Business Continuity Management (BCM) in order to monitor environmental pollution and any disruption to operations.”

Cape Argus

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