Cornwall

Fire on fishing vessel MV Athena is out after 13 days

Firefighters being lowered on board Athena
Image caption The Athena was held in position offshore by a tug for several days

A fire which has been burning on a fishing ship for 13 days has been put out, coastguards have said.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) said following confirmation the fire was "out" the MV Athena was "accepted into Falmouth Port".

The vessel will be handed back to its owners from salvors, for repairs.

Thousands of cardboard boxes on board the Athena caught fire about 230 miles (370km) south west of the Isles of Scilly on 27 October.

It sailed to Cornwall but was not allowed into harbour while the fire was alight.

Most of the ship's 111-strong crew abandoned the vessel in the Atlantic Ocean when the boxes in the hold caught fire.

Thirteen remained on board to steer the Faroes-registered ship to Cornwall and fight the fire.

The ship was completely abandoned on 29 October after the remaining crew and firefighters airlifted on to the vessel from Cornwall were overcome by carbon monoxide fumes.

Future sailing

About 650,000 cardboard boxes were believed to be alight in the confined area of the hold at the fire's height, causing it to last so long.

The ship was held in position five miles (8km) east of Falmouth by an emergency tug for several days before being towed to the Crossroads Buoy in the Carrick Roads.

The Athena was constructed in 1992 and rebuilt in China this year following another fire.

Once repaired, and following an inspection by MCA, the vessel will be able to sail again.

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