A Singapore-flagged oil tanker, BW Rhine, was hit by an explosion off Saudi Arabia’s Jeddah port, today.
Shipping firm Hafnia said in a statement that the tanker was “hit from an external source whilst discharging at Jeddah, Saudi Arabia at approximately 00:40 local time on 14 December 2020, causing an explosion and subsequent fire onboard.”
The crew extinguished the fire with assistance from the shore fire brigade and tug boats, and all 22 seafarers have been accounted for with no injuries.
BW Rhine has suffered hull damage. 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.
Cooling procedures and inerting of cargo space have been initiated to avoid reignition of fire. Ship stability is being assessed before proceeding with any further operations.