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On Monday 29 August, 2022 around 12.30 CEST a fire broke out in the cooling container of a truck on car deck onboard Stena Scandica. The vessel was on its way from Nynäshamn, Sweden to Ventspils, Latvia carrying 241 passengers and 58 crew.

The fire was put out by the Stena Line crew, using the extinguishing system on board. The integrity and stability of the vessel was not compromised, but due to the incident the vessel lost power and started to drift slowly off course.

At Stena Line we always put safety first, which is why we decided to start evacuating the passengers with extra need of assistance as a precaution. There was never any immediate danger, but it is important we are as prepared as possible for any scenario”, says Niclas Mårtensson, CEO at Stena Line.

The evacuation

The evacuation happened in a calm and collected manner, together with the Joint Rescue Co-ordination Centre (JRCC) and in total 32 passengers were evacuated using helicopter. 26 passengers were taken to Destination Gotland’s vessel M/S Visby, which was on standby close to Stena Scandica. Additional six passenger were taken straight to the city of Visby due to the weather conditions.

The safety and wellbeing of our passengers and crew have been our focus throughout the event. We do understand it has been extremely stressful experience for our passengers and I am proud of how our employees handled the situation. I am relieved no one was injured and pleased with how well our safety teams reacted onboard and how the evacuation process were handled according to our management systems”, says Niclas Mårtensson.

At Stena Line, crew on all vessels hold weekly safety drills, practicing among other things fire, protection and medical emergencies. In addition, there are also larger drills several times a year, such as mass evacuation of the vessels in cooperation with shore-side authorities, this happens across the network.

Passengers care taken

Shortly before 21.00 CEST Stena Scandica regained power, thanks to the crew on board and were able to set course for Nynäshamn where she made port at 11:10 CEST. All passengers are well taken care of and authorities are on the scene to start their routine investigation.

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