On Tuesday emergency service teams were able to rescue 156 people from the burning Sorrento ferry. The vessel was crossing the Mediterranean en route from the Mallorca island to the Spain-based Valencia port.
The ferry, which is currently operated by Trasmediterranea-Acciona but owned by the Italian company of Atlantica di Navigazione, sent out several distress calls, as commented by the Spanish Ministry of Public Works via a statement.
“At the time of the accident the Sorrento vessel had a total of 156 people onboard, including both passengers and crew members. None has been left behind and all have been successfully rescued,” Acciona made clear via a statement.
Several Spanish news websites published pictures of the ferry burning. The causes behind the fire remain unknown as of the moment.
The evacuation procedures occurred an hour following the ferry’s departure from Palma de Mallorca, as reported by Acciona.
The captain was at first reluctant to evacuate the vessel, but eventually the passengers along with the crew members left the burning ferry via the use of lifeboats.
The Spanish Sea Rescue Service appointed four boats along with a helicopter to the vessel’s location in order to aid the evacuation. The National Guard also deployed a helicopter and two boats to the scene.
Atlantica di Navigazione has issued confirmation for both the fire accident and the successful evacuation of the passengers and crew members.
The Balearic Island port authority has commented that the burn-out vessel could potentially sink at its current position – 35 miles off the coast of Palma de Mallorca.