KOCHI:A chemical tanker vessel M V Nalini, sailing from Mundra Port in Gujarat to Colombo, caught fire killing a person following a blast in the engine room off the Kochi coast on Wednesday. According to the Navy, Yogesh Kanji Solanki, 29, a native of Ahmedabad, suffered 99 per cent burn injuries and was evacuated by a Navy Advanced Light Helicopter. However, he died while being shifted to hospital.
The ship transporting naphtha was anchored 14.5 nautical miles off the coast. Though the fire was brought under control, there was a blackout on the ship as the power system failed following the explosion. The propulsion system of the ship was also affected. According to the Navy, there were 22 persons on board and all, except the injured person, were safe.
On receiving information, the Southern Naval Command launched the ALH to evacuate the injured person and kept a Sea King helicopter ready for further rescue operations. Naval ship INS Kalpeni also sailed to the spot for assistance.The Coast Guard despatched a Charlie boat and the Cochin Port Trust deputed a tug. The reason for the explosion was being ascertained.