Posted on October 02, 2019 by Ilias Kiritsis
A fire erupted onboard the Mexican-flagged Fishing Vessel, MARIA VERONICA during the afternoon of October the 1st while the vessel was about to depart the port of Manzanillo, Colima, Mexico.
The incident occurred while the vessel was engaged in welding works, as part of ship maintenance before it would go out for fishing.
Unfortunately, the fire reached the fuel tanks of the vessel, and as a result, the flames spread rapidly, soon engulfing the whole ship.
Due to the extent of the fire, the Manzanillo Port Authority called for the evacuation of the surrounding area. The whole port had been covered in a dense cloud of toxic smoke, visible across the region.
Overall, more than 1,200 people had to be evacuated in the following hours bringing port operations to a standstill.
The Mexican Navy and Federal Police also set out a wide perimeter in order to prevent any accidental casualties.
As of writing, the blaze is still on-going; the evening rainfall doesn’t seem to have slowed down the blaze.
Emergency fire brigades are still on the scene trying to contain the fire and stop it from spreading.
The vessel has since then partially capsized and is resting on its portside.
Thankfully, there’s been no injuries as a result of the fire. There is however the potential for environmental contamination, and local authorities will be conducting a thorough analysis of the area in the following days.