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Fire Breaks Out On Ferry, No One Injured

December 20, 1988

DOVER, England (AP) _ Fire broke out in two engine rooms of a passenger ferry in the English Channel on Tuesday, but no one was injured and firefighters put out the flames, the coast guard said.

The Sally Star, with 373 passengers and 109 crew members en route to Dunkirk, France, was four miles from Ramsgate harbor when the fire started about 9:30 a.m., said a spokesman for the coast guard in Dover.

The passengers remained on board as the crew tried to keep the fire under control until a Royal Air Force helicopter brought 20 firefighters to the scene, said Michael Kingshott, managing director of Sally Line Ltd., the ferry’s owner. He said the fire was contained by a system that pumped carbon dioxide into the engine rooms to starve the flames of oxygen.

The blaze, which started near the main boiler, blistered paint on the vessel’s walls, according to the firefighters.

The ferry company and the British Department of Tranport have ordered investigations into the blaze. The ferry was towed back to Ramsgate.

Update hourly