The Guardia Civil and the Coastguard yesterday had to evacuate 25 crew from a cargo ship that was on fire 25 miles off Majorca and 15 from the Cabrera archipelago.
The Coastguard brought in two helicopters and three boats in effecting the rescue; fifteen of the crew were lifted by helicopter. The other ten, including the captain, transferred to a rescue ship having stayed on board while the fire was being put out. There were no injuries of any significance. By early afternoon the fire was extinguished. The ship was then towed by tug to Palma.
The fire started at 4.20. The ship, the Grande Europa, was on its way to Valencia with a cargo of 1,843 cars. It had originated from Salerno, south of Naples. Twenty years old and 183 metres long, it belongs to Grimaldi Lines and flies the Italian flag.
The Balearics emergency services activated the marine waters contamination plan as a precaution.