Fireboats head to the Felicity Ace, the burning ship in the Atlantic with 4,000 luxury vehicles


The 60,000-ton cargo ship transports around 4,000 vehicles from the German Volkswagen Group. It was en route from Emden, Germany, where Volkswagen has a plant, to Davisville, Rhode Island, when it caught fire near Portugal on Wednesday. The Portuguese Navy evacuated all 22 crew members on board.

A spokesman for MOL Ship Management (Singapore) Pte. Ltd., which owns the company that operates the Felicity Ace, told the Journal on Saturday that the 650-foot vessel is still burning but has not spilled any oil and remains stable amid concerns it may sink .

MOL told The Journal it expects the first of the vessels transporting firefighting equipment to the Felicity Ace to arrive from Gibraltar on Sunday. A second fireboat is arriving on Monday, and a salvage vessel from Rotterdam, Netherlands, is expected to arrive on Wednesday or Thursday.

The cause of the fire is not yet clear.

“It will be months before we complete an investigation and know what happened,” a spokesman for MOL told the Journal.

In the USA, the Volkswagen Group sells vehicles from the Volkswagen, Porsche, Audi, Lamborghini, Bentley and Bugatti brands. A Porsche spokesman previously confirmed to Insider that there are “a number” of Porsche cars on board the ship, but said it was too early to know if any could be recovered.

MOL and the Volkswagen Group did not immediately respond to insiders’ requests for comment.


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