Two firefighters from Newark lost their lives, and six were badly injured on Wednesday while fighting a huge fire on a cargo vessel loaded with vehicles at New Jersey’s port of Newark, per the officials.
The firefighters answered the call of several vehicles being on fire aboard a roll-on/roll-off (RORO, also popular as ro-ro) cargo vessel dubbed the Grande Costa D’Avorio close to 9:25 p.m. on Wednesday, the US Coast Guard mentioned in its statement.
Firefighters boarded the vessel and went to the tenth or eleventh floor to extinguish flames. Two of the members then made some mayday calls reporting that they were lost in the fire, Newark Fire Chief Rufus Jackson stated on Thursday.
Members tried to extinguish the fire, however, got pushed back due to the immense heat. Two firefighters were lost as they were backing out of the structure, Jackson mentioned overnight. Relevant authorities identified the firefighters as Wayne Brooks Jr., 49. and Augusto Acabou, 45.
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Additionally, three of Newark’s firefighters, along with two firefighters from the other departments, suffered some burns, smoke inhalation, and heat exhaustion. A sixth firefighter also suffered injuries, authorities reported late on Thursday. That individual’s injuries weren’t specified.
The US Coast Guard besides the Port Authority of New York as well as New Jersey, the Newark Fire Department, Gallagher Marine Systems, and the representative for the ship operator – are working to extinguish the fire, and the officials are strictly monitoring the air quality, per a press release published on Thursday.
Currently, firefighting crew members have been striving to extinguish the fire, both from the pier and from the waterside, specifies the press release. Crew members are working to gain access to the upper decks, which are understood to be the main source of the fire.
The vessel was in the process of completing cargo missions of loading automobiles when the fire started, per the Coast Guard. The crew members on the vessel activated onboard fire suppression processes as local firefighters had been alerted, per the release.
References: edition, reuters, nytimes, usatoday
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