Asian Empire, a car carrier, reported fire on board on April 19 at 5:30 pm (Tokyo time). The incident happened around 480 nautical miles south off Tokyo while the ship was sailing loaded to Panama. According to the Japanese Coast Guard, the crew of 24 sailors managed to get on life boats and was rescued by Asian Adonis. They all are expected to arrive in Saipan, Commonwealth of the Northern Marianas Islands later today. There were no reports of injuries.
According to preliminary investigations, the fire erupted in a storeroom of the vessel.
A Japanese Coast Guard (JCG) patrol boat reached the car carrier yesterday evening. There were no signs of fire, smoke or pollution in the area. The temperature of the vessel's hull was 24-25 degrees Celsius. Two salvage tugs, from Japan and Taiwan, are expected to arrive in the next two days.
Asian Empire (IMO number 9176606 and MMSI 440114000) is a car carrier registered in South Korea. The 71,383-ton vessel was built in 1998 and is managed by Eukor Car Carriers Inc.