Fire Aboard Vessel Inbound to New York


By MarEx 2015-03-19 11:15:20

The U.S. Coast Guard and local emergency services are fighting a fire aboard the RORO Grey Shark at Homeport Pier in Staten Island, New York.

The Motor Vessel Grey Shark, a 360-foot Panamanian-flagged RORO vessel, departed New York on March 11 bound for the Caribbean Sea with 13 crewmembers aboard.

On Saturday, one of the vessel’s two engines had ceased to operate, causing the master of the ship to make the decision to return to New York for repairs.

On Sunday, at approximately 4 p.m., the vessel experienced difficulty with its second engine that caused a fire to break out the cargo spaces. Power was subsequently restored to one of the vessel’s engines and no injuries have been reported. The fire was contained by the onboard firefighting system but has continued to smolder since the initial ignition.

The Coast Guard Cutter Seneca arrived on scene to provide assistance alongside a commercial tug from McAllister Towing. By the early morning on Monday, both the Seneca crew and the tug were on scene, approximately 180 miles southeast of Cape May, New Jersey.

A tow was rigged for the Grey Shark so the damaged vessel could be returned to New York for inspection where a safety zone was established around the vessel.

On Wednesday morning, the Grey Shark was brought to Homeport Pier in Staten Island so that fire crews could board the vessel and control the smoldering fire. The Grey Shark moved from Gravesend Bay, under Coast Guard and tug escort, arriving at Homeport Pier at approximately 1:30 p.m.

Fire brigade crews immediately began operations to assess and address any remaining fires on board the vessel.

Once fire brigade officials have declared the fire to be completely extinguished, the investigation into the cause of both the fire and the loss of engine power will begin.