According to Iran’s Pars and Tasnim agencies, the largest ship of the Iranian navy caught fire and sank under unclear circumstances in the Gulf of Oman.
The blaze began around 2:25 a.m. and firefighters tried to contain it, Fars said. The vessel sank near the Iranian port of Jask, some 1,270 kilometers (790 miles) southeast of Tehran on the Gulf of Oman near the Strait of Hormuz — the narrow mouth of the Persian Gulf.
The firefighting efforts went on for 20 hours before the ship went down.
The public relations department of the Iranian Navy’s second maritime zone in Jask said in a statement that all crew on board the vessel have been disembarked and transferred to the coast after the fire broke out in Khark.
Photos circulated on Iranian social media of sailors wearing life jackets evacuating the vessel as a fire burning behind them. State TV and semiofficial news agencies referred to the Kharg as a “training ship.” Fars published a video of thick, black smoke rising from the ship early Wednesday morning.
About Iran Navy ship Kharg:
The Kharg was a modified Ol-class fleet replenishment oiler of the Islamic Republic of Iran Navy, named after Kharg Island. Built by Swan Hunter in the United Kingdom and launched in 1977, she was delivered to Iran in 1984.
Kharg displaces 11,242 tonnes of standard load and up to 33,544 tonnes at full load. She has a gross tonnage of 18,880 tonnes, and a deadweight tonnage of 9,517 tonnes. According to Jane’s the vessel is 207.2 m long, would have a beam of 26.5 m and a draft of 9.2 m. The Combat Fleets of the World records the dimensions slightly different, with 207.15 m, 25.50 m and 9.14 m for length, beam and draft respectively.
Her original installed machinery includes a pair of two-drum boilers built by Babcock & Wilcox, that rotate two Westinghouse geared turbine sets. The system was designed to generate 7,000 kW of electricity, and to provide 26,870 horsepower (20.04 MW) for her single shaft coupled with the propeller. The ship is capable of reaching a nominal top speed of 21.5 knots.
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