Malaysia confirmed that the attempts to contain and extinguish a fire that broke out on board a containership in Port Klang were still ongoing four days after the incident took place.
Namely, the Singaporean-flagged Interasia Catalyst had left Port Klang, heading to Cochin, India, when its crew reported smoke coming from some of the containers on April 7.
As a result, the vessel received instructions to return to Port Klang Anchorage to await the arrival of firefighting teams.
The blaze destroyed 11 containers, while by April 11, it was extinguished on five containers. This allowed the firefighters to focus on the six other affected boxes.
No injuries have been reported.
There has been a substantial increase over the last decade in the number of fires in containers carried onboard container and ro-ro ships. One troubling statistic is that on average there is a fire onboard a container ships every week, with a major container fire occurring on average every 60 days. Nine major container ship fires were reported in 2019. By comparison, despite an overall fall in casualties in the first half of 2020, ten such incidents were reported.