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Fire on US Navy ship rages for second day

Fire on US Navy Ship Rages for the Second Day

SAN DIEGO – The first responders were fighting a fire on board the USS Bonhomme Richard, an amphibious assault ship moored in a San Diego shipyard, for the second day on Monday.
At least one massive explosion was registered on the ship, which began to appear on its starboard side.
Fifty-nine people, including 36 sailors and 23 civilians, have been treated for heat exhaustion, smoke inhalation and other fire-related injuries.
A senior navy official said the ship’s fire suppression system was not working when the fire broke out.
Hundreds of sailors were working to keep the flames out of 3.7 million liters of oil on board the ship.
The United States Coast Guard hired an oil cleanup team in the event of a spill. Boat traffic within a nautical mile and flights onboard the vessel also stopped.
The fireboats have been working for two days to control the fire
Rear Admiral Philip Sobeck said the temperature of the fire had reached up to 1,000 degrees, causing the mast to collapse and threatening the central control island where the captain operates the ship.
“In the last 24 hours, 400 sailors have been on board that ship to make sure that, you know, we do everything we can to save that ship,” he said. Sobeck also said it was too early to give up on saving the ship.
This is one of the worst United States Navy shipyard fires in recent memory. The light is said to have originated in a lower cargo area, where cardboard boxes, rags and other ship supplies were stored.
Smoke from the fire hung throughout the city. The San Diego Air Pollution Control District warned that concentrations of fine particles could reach unhealthy levels and advised people to avoid exercising outdoors.
The ship began to climb to starboard as helicopters dropped water throughout Monday.
The ship has been docked in San Diego since 2018 for maintenance work.
The fire fighting system had been shut down as part of ongoing maintenance. The system uses halon, a liquefied gas that restricts fire possibilities by cutting off oxygen.
Retired Navy Captain and Professor of International Maritime Law at Fordham University, Lawrence B. Brennan, told AP that it was common to disable the halon system while working on the ship. He also added that the navy had not sufficiently compensated for the deactivation of the suppression system, and had “poor or nonexistent fire limits,” he said.
(Sahar News Monitoring Desk)

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