Updated: Stena Line ferry fire triggers emergency alert

Emergency services were alerted to a fire on board a Stena Line ferry sailing to Belfast last night.

Coastguard and lifeboat crews attended the incident after a blaze broke out in the engine room of Superfast VIII vessel sailing from Cairnryan at around 9pm.

The fire was extinguished and the ferry was assisted into port by tugs and the coastguard.

Passengers were safely disembarked with no reports of injuries, according to the BBC.

They had been advised to congregate in designated areas after an emergency was declared when the ferry was in Belfast Lough.

Stena Line said: “A small fire was detected in an engine, which was immediately extinguished. The engine was shut down and the vessel continued on its voyage to Belfast, where it arrived at just 22.16.

“The Master’s actions were conducted in line with our strict safety protocols to ensure the well-being of the vessel and all those onboard.

“As a standard safety precaution the passengers and crew were asked to prepare themselves for a possible evacuation. However, a full emergency was not called and at no time was there a risk to the passengers, crew or the vessel.

“As part of our normal safety protocols the coast guard was notified and the Master adjusted course to allow time for an assessment of the situation. As a further precaution he requested a Belfast Habour tug boat escort the vessel to its berth, but its assistance was not needed.

“The coast guard has been kept fully informed and after a full assessment the vessel has been approved to resume service.

“There was a  delay to departure due to the vessel needing to wait for other commercial traffic movements in the harbour. The time of departure from Belfast to Cairnryan was 01:45.”

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