The Singapore-flagged MV X-Press Pearl caught on fire off the coast of Sri Lanka. Sri Lankan Navy and Indian Navy joined together to battle fire and some European firefighters had also joined the mission which is going on for seven days now.
Crew members of the ship had been already rescued and according to the reports, a large number of containers had tumbled into the sea. According to the media, the ship was carrying 1486 containers when it caught on fire while waiting to enter Colombo port on May 18.
What is MV X-Press Pearl?
The container ship MV X-Press Pearl built in 2021 and operated by X-Press Feeders. The ship is around 186 meters long and 34 meters in beam. The ship was on a round trip from Port Klang Malaysia. The company has already declared it as out of service and a total loss since May 27 in 2021.
Why did MV X-Press Pearl catch on fire?
The ship has departed Hazira Port India on 15th May 2021. It was carrying 1486 containers containing 25 tons of nitric acids and other poisonous chemicals with cosmetics. The ship arrived in Colombo harbour coast on May 19. But Sri Lankan authorities alleged that the company didn’t inform about anything emergency or leakage from containers before anchoring on the coast.
Foreign news channels report that the ship has requested to offload a container leaking nitric acid from Hamad Port in Qatar and Hazira Port India. But the ship had to arrive at Colombo port without offloading the containers as there were no specialist facilities or expertise immediately available to deal with leaking acid.
Then the ship caught on fire 9.5 nautical miles away from the Colombo port and a large explosion happen inside the ship on 25th May. All the 25 crew members were rescued Experts had assumed that the fire has erupted due to a chemical reaction inside the vessel.