USCG coordinates medical response to bulker explosion

Tamar Tamar Splosna Plovba

APRIL 24, 2017 — The U.S. Coast Guard is coordinating with the New York Air National Guard’s 106th Rescue Wing and the Canadian and Portuguese Coast Guards to provide a medical emergency response for crewmembers following an explosion aboard the 2010 built, 56,563 dwt bulker Tamar 1,300 miles offshore Cape Cod.

At approximately 7 a.m., the captain of the Marshall Islands-flagged 623-foot bulk carrier, which is owned by Slovenia's Splosna Plovba group, contacted watchstanders at the Coast Guard command center reporting an explosion in the ship’s forward storeroom. He also reported the explosion killed one crew member and three suffered massive burns and are in need of immediate medical attention.

The Coast Guard reached out to its partner agencies to coordinate the emergency response. The New York Air National Guard’s 106th Rescue Wing launched an HC-130 aircrew with six pararescuers and one combat rescue officer. The air crew is estimated to reach the Tamar at approximately 6:30 p.m. The pararescuers will jump from their HC-130 with a small boat and advanced life-saving equipment to provide medical treatment for the crew members.

The Canadian Coast Guard has diverted two warships with physician assistants aboard estimated to arrive after midnight.

The fire resulting from the explosion is extinguished and the cause is unknown.

The ship’s engineering plant was unaffected and the crew is continuing on their transit to the Azores, Portugal. Their last port of call was Baltimore.

The First Coast Guard District is responsible for 1,300 miles of offshore search and rescue area. After 1,300 miles, the Portuguese Coast Guard assumes coordination authority for cases east of the boundary.

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