Hafnia-owned LR1 product tanker BW Rhine has suffered fire damage caused by an external explosion whilst the vessel was discharging cargo at Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
The 2008-built, 76,600 dwt BW Rhine was discharging cargo at approximately 00:40 local time on 14 December 2020, when the explosion occurred.
According to Hafnia, the vessel master immediately ceased all discharge operations and enacted emergency procedures onboard. The crew have extinguished the fire with assistance from shore-based fire brigade and tug boats, and all 22 seafarers have been accounted for with no injuries.
Hafnia reported that hull damage has occurred at 5P WBT (water ballast tank 5 on the port side) and 4P COT (cargo tank 4 on the port side). It is possible that some oil has escaped from the vessel, but this has not been confirmed and instrumentation currently indicates that oil levels on board are at the same level as before the incident, the shipowner said.
Cooling procedures and inerting of cargo space have been initiated to avoid reignition of fire and ship stability is being assessed before proceeding with any further operations, according to Hafnia.
Hafnia said it has activated its shore-based emergency response team to assist the Singapore-flagged LR1 product tanker BW Rhine which remains in port in Saudi Arabia. All relevant authorities have been advised of the incident and the company is working with them to ensure the ongoing security of the crew, vessel and environment.
The cause of the incident is not known.
Most recently, an explosion hit Eastern Mediterranean Maritime-managed vessel Syra a 2010-built, Aframax tanker, in Yemen in mid-October 2020.