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Two crew killed in explosion on bulk coal carrier in North Atlantic

25 April 2017

Two crew members are dead and three more have serious burn injuries after an explosion on a coal cargo ship in the North Atlantic Ocean. The captain of the Tamar, a 623-foot Marshall Islands-flagged bulk carrier, reported an explosion in the forward storeroom on April 24, the US Coast Guard (USCG) said in a statement.

Stock image
Stock image

The USCG said it is coordinating with the New York Air National Guard’s 106th Rescue Wing and the Canadian and Portuguese Coast Guards to provide emergency medical assistance to crew members of the Tamar.

The bulker reportedly caught fire following an explosion that took place about 1,300 miles off Cape Cod while en route from the Port of Baltimore to the Azores, Portugal.

New York Air National Guard pararescuers arrived on board at about 9:30 p.m., and are staying with the ship until a higher medical authority can take over in caring for the injured crew, USCG said.

Coast Guard Officials in Canada also sent assistance. Two Canadian warships with physician assistants on board were set to arrive sometime after midnight.

The Portuguese Coast Guard is scheduled to launch a helicopter and pick up the injured crew members and bring them to Ponta Delgada, on the Azores, within 24 hours.

According to USCG, the cause of the explosion is still unknown, but the resulting fire has been extinguished and the vessel’s engines were unaffected by the incident.

The vessel is owned by the Slovenian shipping company Splosna Plovba.

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