LISBON, Portugal (AP) — A big cargo vessel carrying automobiles from Germany to america sank Tuesday within the mid-Atlantic, 13 days after a hearth broke out on board, the ship’s supervisor and the Portuguese navy mentioned.

The Felicity Ace sank about 400 kilometers (250 miles) off Portugal’s Azores Islands because it was being towed, MOL Ship Administration in Singapore mentioned in an announcement. A salvage workforce had put out the fireplace.

The 200-meter-long (650-foot-long) vessel listed to starboard earlier than going below, the ship’s supervisor mentioned.

The Portuguese navy confirmed the sinking, saying it occurred exterior Portuguese waters. A Portuguese Air Power helicopter evacuated the 22 crew members when the fireplace first broke out, setting the ship adrift.

Ocean-going tugboats with firefighting gear had been hosing down the ship’s hull to chill it.

It wasn’t clear what number of automobiles have been onboard the ship, however vessels of the Felicity Ace’s measurement can carry not less than 4,000 autos.

On this undated photograph offered by the Portuguese Navy, smoke billows from the burning Felicity Ace automotive transport ship as seen from the Portuguese Navy NPR Setubal ship southeast of the mid-Atlantic Portuguese Azores Islands. The ship’s crew have been taken by helicopter to Faial island on the archipelago, about 170 kilometers (100 miles) away on Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2022. There have been no reported accidents. (Portuguese Navy by way of AP)

European carmakers declined to debate what number of autos and what fashions have been on board, however Porsche prospects in america have been being contacted by their sellers, the corporate mentioned.

“We’re already working to interchange each automotive affected by this incident and the primary new automobiles will probably be constructed quickly,” Angus Fitton, vp of PR at Porsche Vehicles North America, Inc., advised The Related Press in an e-mail.

The ship was transporting electrical and non-electric autos, based on Portuguese authorities. Suspicion on what began the fireplace on Feb. 16 has fallen on lithium batteries utilized in electrical autos, although authorities say they don’t have any agency proof in regards to the trigger.

A cargo ship loaded with luxurious automobiles is on fireplace within the ocean

Authorities feared the ship might pollute the ocean. The ship was carrying 2,000 metric tons (2,200 tons) of gasoline and a pair of,000 metric tons (2,200 tons) of oil. It may carry greater than 17,000 metric tons (18,700 tons) of cargo.

The Portuguese navy mentioned in an announcement that just a few items of wreckage and a small patch of oil was seen the place the ship went down. The tugboats have been breaking apart the patch with hoses, it mentioned.

A Portuguese Air Power aircraft and a Portuguese navy vessel are to stay on the scene looking out for indicators of air pollution.