NSRI Media Release:
Follow-up 2: Friday, 08 October, 2010. Fire contained, NSRI released from the scene.
Darius van Niekerk, Sea Rescue Mykonos station commander, said: “At 13h45 Sea Rescue Mykonos were released from the scene, 24 nautical miles East of Cape Columbine, after the fire on-board and in the engine room of the Motor Vessel container ship Boundary was brought under control and by 13h45 the NSRI were no longer required to stand-by at the scene and were released by the ships Captain (of the MV Boundary) to return to base.
The ships last port of call was Durban and she was heading to her next port of call Walvis Bay. The container vessel is registered to Majuro, in the Pacific, and is 162 metres in length. Most of the crew onboard are believed to be Filipino Nationals and it is believed that some higher ranking crew may be German Nationals.
“Our sea rescue craft had arrived on-scene at 11h35 and we were confronted by a large container ship with smoke billowing from the aft section. Two of our sea rescue crew were put aboard the casualty ship (after obtaining the necessary permission from the ships Captain to board his ship) where they found the casualty ships crew fighting a fire, contained to the engine room, that at a stage had appeared to run out of control but following extensive fire-fighting efforts the ships crew had managed to bring the fire under control by about 13h20.
“At one point, when the fire appeared to be at its worst, the Captain of the ship had considered ordering his crew to abandon ship but then his crew had managed to bring the blaze under control.
“Ships that were in the area at the time that the fire had been reported and who had stood-by on-scene to lend any assistance (if assistance had been required) have also been released from the scene (at 13h45).
“all 21 crew remain on-board the casualty vessel and they are all safe and in no danger.
“The casualty vessel has been joined by the salvage tug the Smit Amandla who will take over further assistance to the ship and to carry out assessments of the damage caused by the fire.
“It is not known at this stage what caused the fire.
“Engineers are being flown to the ship to assist in damage assessments and to assist in determining the immediate course of action for the ships voyage and cargo.
“Sea Rescue Mykonos rescue craft Spirit of Freemasonry arrived back at our sea rescue base at Mykonos at 16h00.
“The ships crew can be commended for bringing the fire under control.”
Please see the original media releases below……..
Follow-up 1: Friday, 08 October, 2010. NSRI Mykonos on-scene.
NSRI Mykonos rescue craft Spirit of Freemasonry arrived on-scene at 11h35.
2 NSRI volunteers were transferred on-board the motor vessel Boundary.
The 21 crew on-board the casualty vessel are safe and not injured and remain on-board at this stage.
Efforts to fight the fire, reportedly contained to the engine room, are continuing and by 12h55 it appeared that the situation was under control.
A tug boat, from the Port of Saldanha, is expected on-scene at approximately 13h30 and has more advanced fire fighting equipment but may no longer be required following reports that the fire is under control.
A salvage vessel, from Cape Town, is expected on-scene at approximately 15h00.
NSRI Mykonos rescue craft may assist to transfer non-essential crew of the casualty boat onto one of the ships standing-by on-scene but this is not yet confirmed.
Original media release follows………
Friday, 08 October, 2010. Container Ship alight.
NSRI Mykonos were activated at 09h03 by the Transnet National Ports Authority to respond to 27 nautical miles off-shore of Britannia Bay (24 nautical miles East of Cape Columbine) following a request for urgent assistance from the container ship the Motor Vessel Boundary reporting her engine room to be on fire.
Sea Rescue Mykonos have launched their sea rescue vessel Spirit of Freemasonry and are due to arrive on-scene at approximately 12h00.
Two ships that were in the vicinity at the time are standing-by on-scene to assist if necessary.
The 21 crew on-board Boundary are safe on-board their ship despite the fire reported to be increasingly uncontainable and they are prepared to abandon ship if necessary.
The NSRI Mykonos arrival on-scene will shed more light on the situation.
The Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) has dispatched a salvage vessel to assist in the operation.
Maritime Radio Services are assisting with radio communications.
Both the SA Air Force 22 Squadron Air Sea Rescue Unit and the Titan Air Sea Rescue Unit are on high alert to respond to the scene if necessary.
The Metro Ambulance and Rescue Services are on alert to respond if necessary.