Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Fire Breaks Out Aboard Research Vessel

An evacuation took place but no injuries were reported after an electrical fire broke out on a research vessel moored at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal in the Port of San Diego Oct. 6.

The blaze aboard the British-flagged Dorado Discovery, a 321-foot ship equipped for deep-sea mineral exploration, broke out in the vessel’s storage area just before 2:30 pm and caused minor damage before being contained about 30 minutes later.

The fire may have been caused by oxygen containers that exploded, according to the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department.

The 20-year-old vessel, which is 321 feet long and 59 feet wide, is operated by Tampa, Florida-based Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc., which specializes in searches for treasures and artifacts.

Odyssey conducts deep-ocean shipwreck exploration and searches oceans across the world for sunken ships.

In 2009, Discovery Channel aired a 12-part primetime series about Odyssey Marine’s worldwide explorations called “Treasure Quest.” A three-part series called “Silver Rush” premiered on Discovery Channel in 2013.

According to Odyssey Marine, the Dorado Discovery is “the first purpose-built SMS survey vessel and is “designed to support all the different types of equipment used in the exploration phase, and also in the next phases of bulk sampling, drilling, and coring of deposits.”

The company signed a long-term charter for the vessel in 2010.