GRAYS HARBOR, Wash. The engine room fire that started earlier today aboard the fishing vessel Arctic Storm is out, according to the U.S. Coast Guard, and the evacuation of 120 people aboard the vessel when it caught fire is underway.
There are four good samaritan vessels that are fairly small, said Petty Officer Third Class Nate Littlejohn of Sector Columbia River, adding that no injuries have been reported so far. They are evacuating passengers from the arctic storm.
As of a little after 6 p.m., he added, about 30 people had been taken off the Arctic Storm. They are being transferred to other larger, nearby commercial fishing vessels, including the Sea Dawn, Northern Jaeger and Golden Alaska.
The crew of the 334-foot Arctic Storm reported an uncontrollable engine room fire to the Coast Guard at approximately 3:30 p.m. today.
In response to the original report, the Coast Guard launched two of its MH-60 Jayhawk helicopters from Air Station Astoria, a 47-foot motor lifeboat from Station Cape Disappointment and two more from Station Grays Harbor. One helicopter remains on scene, along with at least the two 47-footers from Station Grays Harbor.
The crew of the boat subdued the fire before the Coast Guards arrival using a chemical firefighting system, according to the Coast Guard.
Its still too hot to even think about going in there, he said. Right now the main concern is preserving life. Then will come the salvage of the vessel.
He said that tugs are being brought out to tow the vessel into Aberdeen, Wash., but that it probably wont arrive until Tuesday.
Arctic Storm Management Group of Seattle runs the Arctic Storm, its crews fishing for Pacific Whiting from May through June off the coast of Washington and Oregon.