Unconfirmed reports from various sources suggest that a small container vessel, which experienced a cargo fire just ahead of the accommodation block of the crew members, eventually sunk in the waters of the Red Sea.
The crew members reported the fire on Wednesday and abandoned the container vessel. The Jeddah Marine Rescue Coordination Centre rescued its 25 crew members.
VesselsValue AIS data reflects that the vessel was gradually drifting toward the north of the Farasan Islands, in what would be one of the deepest parts of the Red Sea at over 1,000 meters. The last transmission from the vessel was received at around 8.03 pm.
Border guards rescue the crew of a Panamanian ship that caught on fire in the Red Sea, October 6 pic.twitter.com/yC4H8d750h
— ⚓️MarioDeFenza⚓️ (@MarioDeFenza) October 9, 2022
The Loadstar sources reported that the creek had not been inspected since 1 October 2019, three years ago. Typically, port-state control will examine vessels once in two years, mentioned a source.
WK Webster Claims consultancy reported that they had information that the container vessel TSS Pearl unexpectedly caught a significant fire while in the Red Sea, northwest of the Farasan Islands in Saudi Arabia, on 5 October.
Reports highlight the fire burning in the container stacks placed at the vessel’s stern immediately outside the accommodation block.
TSS Pearl was constructed in China. It was delivered to Rafidain Shipping in 2008, registered in the Marshall Islands, and operated by the UAE-registered Tehama Shipping between Aden and Jeddah in Yemen.
Cargo fires have long been a menace to container vessels, with many high-profile incidents, including Maersk Honam, wherein five crew members reportedly lost their lives.
References: Port Technology, The Load Star