1 Apr 2012

Cruise ship heads for Malaysia after engine fire

4:27 pm on 1 April 2012

A cruise ship temporarily stranded off the south Philippines coast after a fire disabled engines is heading for a port in eastern Malaysia under emergency power.

The Philippines coastguard says the Azamara Quest, carrying 600 passengers and 411 crew, is now on its way to Sandakan port, in the eastern Malaysian state of Sabah.

The ship is moving under emergency power.

The fire was put out on Saturday.

Five crew members suffered smoke inhalation during the fire and one needs urgent medical attention in hospital.

The coastguard says all the passengers are safe.

Azamara Club Cruises says the captain has mustered the mainly American and Western European passengers to their assembly stations.

The fire at sea was the latest in a string of cruise ship accidents.

Thirty-two people died when the Costa Concordia ran aground and capsized off the western coast of Italy in January and a fire on the Costra Allegra left the ship stranded in waters patrolled by pirates in the Indian Ocean for three days in February.