Oslo-based Stolt Tankers, part of the Stolt-Nielsen shipping concern, was thanking rescue services at the Port of Ulsan in South Korea after one of its oil tankers exploded while berthed over the weekend. Stolt hailed the authorities’ “immediate response to this serious situation.”
The company said it had mobilized a “multi-national team of internal and external experts” to assist local authorities, assess damage and start the investigation into the cause of the blast. It expressed “its deepest concern” about the explosion and for “any potential impact on those who were on board or in the vicinity” of its Stolt Groenland and another vessel that was moored alongside it, the Bow Dalian.
The explosion sent up a spectacular fireball at around 11am Saturday local time. Stolt said that all seafarers on board the vessel were evacuated and only one crew member suffered what was described as a minor injury. “Emergency responders” continued to spray cooling water on the vessel, which reportedly was stable, and no cargo or fuel was believed to have been released into the water.