Another cruise ship catches fire in Vietnam's Ha Long Bay

By VnExpress   February 13, 2017 | 09:00 am PT
Another cruise ship catches fire in Vietnam's Ha Long Bay
A cruise ship went on fire in Ha Long Bay on January 10. Photo courtesy of Quang Ninh newspaper
No injuries were reported in the incident, which happened just more than a month after a similar fire.

A cruise ship went on fire on Monday afternoon in Ha Long Bay, a top travel destination in the northern province of Quang Ninh. No injuries were reported.

The incident happened at around 3 p.m. when the anchored ship was waiting for seven tourists, including five foreigners, who had just left for a kayaking session, local media reported.

Crew members managed to save all the luggage and put out the fire. The wooden vessel was built in 2003 and renovated in 2012.

Authorities are investigating what caused the incident.

Just more than a month ago, another cruise ship carrying 14 foreigners in Ha Long went on fire before it sank on January 10.

The ship was returning from a night trip at around 6:30 a.m. when flames spread quickly and engulfed most of the vessel.

Rescue workers at a local port managed to bring all 14 foreign tourists, their guide and six crew members to another boat before their ship sank.

Fire safety has long been a concern among tourists on cruise trips in Ha Long Bay, a world-renowned destination and beloved by many foreigners. Incidents like this keep happening, even after officials have stepped up inspection.

Authorities in the northern province of Quang Ninh have announced plans to replace all the wooden boats and ships with metal vessels in the next five years.

Last year they also considered a ban on overnight trips for safety reason but did not make a decision.

Quang Ninh received 8.3 million visitors last year, up 7 percent from 2015, according to official data. Of those visitors, there were 3.5 million foreigners and most of them, if not all, probably visited Ha Long Bay.

Related news:

> 14 foreign tourists rescued from Ha Long cruise ship blaze

> Vietnam's Ha Long Bay to be patrolled by new tourism police force

> Australian tourist committed suicide in Ha Long Bay: Vietnam police

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