LISBON — A fire which swept through a cargo ship carrying 1000’s of Volkswagen Group vehicles and adrift off the coast of Portugal’s Azores islands has lost its depth, probably for the reason that there is little still left to melt away, a port formal reported.
The Felicity Ace, carrying about 4,000 autos such as VWs, Porsches, Audis, Bentleys and Lamborghinis — some electric with lithium ion batteries — caught fire in the center of the Atlantic Ocean on Wednesday.
The 22 crew members on board were being evacuated the exact day.
“The fire has subsided in modern several hours,” João Mendes Cabeças, captain of the closest port in the Azorean island of Faial, explained to Lusa information company, expressing there was possibly small combustible substance left to burn up.
Cabeças instructed Reuters in excess of the weekend lithium ion batteries in the EVs have been “keeping the fire alive,” introducing that professional machines was demanded to extinguish it. It was not crystal clear irrespective of whether the batteries sparked the fireplace.
He also reported the hearth was spreading closer to the ship’s gas tanks.
“Our problem has been with pollution given that the ship has massive amounts of fuel on board and car batteries but so far there are no hotbeds of air pollution,” Cabeças advised Lusa.
As the fire’s depth ebbs, firefighting teams and experts could possibly be capable to board the vessel to get ready towing it to either Europe or the Bahamas, Cabeças mentioned.
Bloomberg, quoting an internal VW e-mail, noted Friday that 3,965 automobiles are on board the ship. About 1,100 Porsches and 189 Bentleys were being on board, spokespeople for the car makes mentioned. Audi, an additional Volkswagen brand name, confirmed some of its automobiles had been also on the ship but did not point out how a lot of.
VW did not answer to a Reuters ask for for comment on the up coming ways to establish the result in of the hearth.
U.S. economist Patrick Anderson very last week initial approximated the initial loss could be $255 million, but by Friday bumped his calculation up to $282 million.
“On the lookout at the full cargo, assuming that a few-fourths of the autos are a full loss, and averaging the wholesale worth at a reduce sum (to account for the VWs as well as some Bentleys and a great deal of Audis), implies this requires about $376,675,000 value of cargo. Almost certainly a few-fourths of that, or $282,506,250 is a complete loss, if the ship is in truth nonetheless burning as of now (as is documented and for which we have video proof.)
“Once more, we do not have a fantastic evaluation of the degree of destruction to the cargo from any inspection, but fireplace, h2o, smoke, and submersion destruction are all overlapping likelihoods for these vehicles.
“These amounts do not include the downstream loss at dealers. It also does not contain any salvage, environmental, or other fees, nor the ship by itself, nor any misplaced wages of the crew or expenses to the Portuguese that rescued them.”
It’s not the initial time the producer has misplaced goods at sea. When the Grande The usa caught hearth and sank in 2019, much more than 2,000 luxurious vehicles, such as Audis and Porsches, sank with it.
A spokesperson for Lamborghini’s U.S. operation declined to comment on the selection of vehicles the enterprise experienced on board or which designs were impacted, but reported that they are in make contact with with the delivery organization to get far more information and facts about the incident.
Felicity Ace is around the dimension of 3 soccer fields.
Reuters, Bloomberg and Philip Nussel from Automotive News contributed to this report.