Search and rescue coordinators at the District Seven Command Center in Miami are coordinating fire-fighting efforts of an unmanned 730-foot barge with containers on fire about 86-miles northeast of Nassau, Bahamas.
The Command Center received a call from the 127-foot tug Patriarch, about 12:30 p.m. yesterday, stating a fire started from the cargo boxes of the barge. There is no threat to the general population or the seven crewmembers aboard the Patriarch at this time. The Patriarch is en route to Nassau, Bahamas to be closer to commercial salvage and fire fighting capabilities.
The Coast Guard Cutter Robert Yered has been diverted to the area to assist with search and rescue efforts if necessary.
An HC-144A Ocean Sentry aircraft crew, from Coast Guard Air Station Miami, is monitoring the vessel and the extent of the fire.
The Robert Yered is a 154-foot fast response cutter homeported in Miami Beach, Miami.
Press Release, March 7, 2014, 2014; Image: USCG