Sunday, 28 April 2019

1 Dead In Fire At Kolkata Port

One person died as a major fire broke out in a mobile harbour crane in Haldia dock of the Kolkata port on Saturday, an official said.
The fire was noticed in the mobile harbour crane on berth no 13 where coal unloading was taking place.
A mobile harbour crane driver could not come down due to the blaze and he was rescued when he jumped on a safety net below.
However, he succumbed to injuries after he was taken to hospital, Kolkata Port Trust Chairman Vinit Kumar told PTI.

The berth is managed by a private operator and these high value cranes are huge structures used to load and unload cargo at much faster rate than normal cranes, sources said.
Seven fire tenders of the port, fire services and other companies of Haldia brought the blaze under control by noon.
The cause of fire is not yet known but it has caused major damage, the official said.

UPDATE: Port crane caught fire, probably some coal, too. PELLA was moored alongside another bulk carrier, berthed at pier. Water cooling and protection from sparks on cargo deck can be clearly seen. No news on damages yet. 
Fire erupted at around 0830 LT Apr 27 during loading coal into bulk carrier PELLA in Haldia port, India. Fire reported as major, with deployment of all available fire engines. Not clear if fire is on board of bulk carrier, or in coal repository, but bulk carrier and berthed across basin tanker CEVDET A (IMO 9474450), loaded with oil products, are said to be in danger.
Bulk carrier PELLA, IMO 9510321, dwt 82163, built 2010, flag Marshall Islands, manager HYDROUSSA NAVIGATION LTD.

Erofey is a Merchant Marine Captain with more than 20 years experience in commanding oil tankers. He works as a Captain, being most of his time at sea. He contributes maritime news.

Maritime and Crimean Shipping News

50-foot up in air, when luck ran out on a crane driver 

Rai jumped to save his life, breaking his hip and suffering multiple fractures to his left arm
By Anshuman Phadikar in Haldia 
  • Published 28.04.19, 7:05 AM
  • Updated 28.04.19, 7:05 AM
  • a min read
The crane on fire at Haldia port. Picture by Jahangir Badsa
A crane operator at Haldia port who jumped off his 50-foot-high cabin to escape a blaze on Saturday told this newspaper he was forced to “chance my luck”, hours before he died of his injuries at a Calcutta hospital.
Uttar Pradesh resident Dravin Rai, 28, was operating the private mobile harbour crane at the 13th berth of Haldia port, unloading coal from a docked tanker, while the crane was being refuelled from a diesel truck. Apparently, a mistake during the refuelling caused the crane to catch fire.
Port sources said the diesel truck had failed to remove the Rs 25-crore crane’s fuel cap in time, causing some diesel to spill from the truck’s fuelling pipe onto the crane’s body.
“The heat generated from the fuel touching the operating surface caused the crane’s fuel tank to catch fire and explode,” a worker said.
Rai jumped to save his life, breaking his hip and suffering multiple fractures to his left arm. “It’s a hazardous job. I had to chance my luck to save myself,” Rai told The Telegraph around 10am from a nursing home in Haldia.
“I fell unconscious after hitting the concrete and regained consciousness only here.”
Rai was later brought to Calcutta and admitted to a private hospital. Haldia police said he died at 5.37pm.
Rai’s helpers, Sheikh Rafique, 55, and Sheikh Anaul, 30, were inside a lower compartment of the crane. They too jumped but suffered minor injuries, and were discharged from a Haldia hospital in the evening.
Port sources said six fire tenders took about three hours to douse the flames. They said the crane was one of 12 private cranes operating at the Haldia port.
“We shut the 13th berth down for the day and have launched an investigation into the cause of the fire,” said Amal Dutta, general manager (administration), Haldia port.
Sources said the port would have lost “crores of rupees” on Saturday because of the halt in work.
“No damage was caused to the coal tanker that was being unloaded. But the smoke from the crane billowed into the surrounding berths, causing operations to be halted for a few hours in those as well,” a source said.

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