Fishing trawler catches fire in Andaman sea, 9 crew rescued

Picture courtesy of the Thai Maritime Enforcement Command Centre Region 3

The Sri Thong Pae 7 fishing trawler was engulfed in flames while refuelling in the Andaman Sea, leading to a rescue operation that saved the lives of nine crew members. The incident occurred early this morning, 15 nautical miles southwest of Koh Surin islands, off Phang Nga.

Upon receiving the distress signal at approximately 3.30am, the Thai Maritime Enforcement Command Centre Region 3 (Thai-MECC Region 3) initiated a rescue operation. The crew on board the ill-fated trawler consisted of two Thais and seven Myanmar nationals.

Another fishing trawler, Charn Udom Sombat 1, spotted the blazing vessel about half an hour later. The crews swiftly evacuated the nine crew members from the burning ship and took them ashore.

Post the rescue, the Royal Thai Navy’s air and coastal defence command dispatched a speed boat to retrieve the sailors from Charn Udom Sombat 1. The crew was transported to a fishing pier in Khura Buri district.

Unfortunately, five crew members sustained injuries during the fiery ordeal. Pairat Pala, a 54 year old Thai engine mechanic, suffered serious burn injuries, reported Bangkok Post.

The cause of the fire is yet to be confirmed. However, the skipper of the sunken vessel conjectured that engine parts that came into contact with fuel oil vapours during the refuelling process might have triggered the fire.

In related news, the Thai authorities successfully rescued 97 passengers and 11 crew members after a fire broke out on an overnight ferry travelling from the mainland in the southern province of Surat Thani to Koh Tao.

ThaiRath reported that the fire started in the engine room of the Koh Charoen 2 ferry at around 6.30 am on April 4, when the boat was about 4 to 6 kilometres away from Koh Tao.

The ferry was carrying goods and 108 people, including 97 Thai and foreign passengers, as well as 11 boat crew members. It departed from a pier in Surat Thani on April 3, around 11pm.

Thailand News

Mitch Connor

Mitch is a Bangkok resident, having relocated from Southern California, via Florida in 2022. He studied journalism before dropping out of college to teach English in South America. After returning to the US, he spent 4 years working for various online publishers before moving to Thailand.

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