Video: Turkish Responders Rescue Burning Freight Ro/Ro in Aegean

gallipoli seaways fire
Image courtesy KEGM

Published Feb 14, 2021 2:07 PM by The Maritime Executive

On Thursday, Turkey's General Directorate of Coastal Safety (KEGM) rescued the freight ro/ro Gallipoli Seaways off the coast of Babakale in the northern Aegean Sea. A bus aboard the vessel caught fire, and the blaze spread, prompting an extended firefighting effort. 

During a transit from Tuzla, Istanbul to Trieste, the master of the Gallipoli Seaways made contact with Çanakkale Strait VTS watchstanders to report smoke on deck. Two KEGM response tugs, Kurtarma-10 and Kurtarma-4, were dispatched to the scene.

When they arrived, they found that the vessel had taken on a 10-degree list to port. They towed her to a cement plant terminal near the town of Yenikoy, where shoreside fire departments joined the effort from the pier. 

KEGM tugs provided hull cooling water as firefighting continued, and the blaze was successfully extingished by the early hours of Friday morning. 

22 crewmembers, four passengers and 221 vehicles were on board at the time of the fire. No injuries were reported.

Gallipoli Seaways departed the cement plant pier on Saturday, according to tracking provided by Pole Star. As of Sunday, she was moored at a ro/ro terminal outside of Istanbul.