300 to be evacuated from Swedish ferry after fire

300 to be evacuated from Swedish ferry after fire
# 30 August 2022 07:32 (UTC +04:00)

A rescue operation of around 300 people from a Swedish passenger ferry was underway on Monday evening, after a blaze onboard, APA reports citing Reuters.

However, the operation was hampered by rough weather in the Baltic Sea.

No-one onboard the Stena Scandica was injured in the fire that broke out on one of the vessel's car decks at around 12:40 p.m., when the vessel was in the vicinity of Gotska Sandon, an islet north of the island of Gotland.

Several vessels and helicopters attended the scene, and the blaze was extinguished, but the vessel's electric system was damaged.

Without power, the crew could not anchor, and the Stena Scandica was left drifting in winds of between 15 and 20 meters per second, Swedish Television reported.

"It's a stiff gale and the weather is quite unfavorable," Johan Wahlstrom at the Swedish Maritime Administration told Swedish Television.

A tug was sent from Nynashamn port, south of Stockholm, to tow the ship to harbor. Shortly after 7 p.m., the decision was taken to evacuate those onboard.

Due to the rough seas, passengers and crew are likely to be rescued by helicopter and taken to another passenger vessel.