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Disaster Strikes Lürssen Shipyard: Massive Fire Destroys Building and Yacht

Disaster Strikes Lürssen Shipyard: Massive Fire Destroys Building and Yacht

Disaster Strikes Lürssen Shipyard: Massive Fire Destroys Building and Yacht

A catastrophic fire erupted at the Lürssen shipyard on Tuesday, July 2nd, 2024, leaving a path of destruction in its wake. The blaze, which ignited around 9:00 am local time at the Schacht-Audorf facility bordering the Kiel Canal, raged for nearly a full day before firefighters finally extinguished it by afternoon.

The inferno caused significant damage, consuming a large building hall and a superyacht under construction. Emergency services mounted a large-scale response, deploying over 300 firefighters, two evacuation helicopters, and numerous ambulances to the scene. Thankfully, the injuries were relatively minor. One person suffered smoke inhalation and required hospitalization, while another 24 individuals received treatment at the site.

Eyewitness accounts described a terrifying scene with explosions rocking the shipyard as the fire rapidly spread. The intense heat forced the evacuation of approximately 100 shipyard personnel. Smoke billowed thick and dark, blanketing the surrounding area and prompting the evacuation of at least 30 residents from their homes.

Fireboats on the Kiel Canal joined the firefighting effort, although the blaze necessitated a temporary halt to canal operations. Despite being brought under control, the fire’s embers are expected to smoulder for several days.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation. Unconfirmed reports suggest the blaze originated on the Honolulu, a luxurious 246-foot yacht valued at a staggering $250 million and reportedly under construction for a Saudi tycoon. Lürssen, the renowned shipyard, has yet to confirm this information. Speculation further swirled after a recent Lürssen social media post showcasing a chrome-plated yacht in a dry dock, potentially hinting at the Honolulu’s identity.

The immense heat, exceeding 1000 degrees Fahrenheit, prevented firefighters from entering the building directly. Consequently, they were forced to battle the flames from outside. By mid-morning, the inferno’s fury had caused the roof and sections of the 320-foot-long building hall to collapse.

In a statement released after the fire, Lürssen expressed gratitude to the heroic firefighters and acknowledged the ongoing investigation into the incident’s cause. The company reassured the public that no major injuries had occurred and outlined plans for immediate cleanup operations. The shipyard’s operations would be gradually restored in designated areas.

Founded in 1875, Lürssen boasts a rich heritage of constructing and maintaining some of the world’s most impressive, large-scale luxury yachts across its various German shipyards. The devastation caused by the fire has understandably sparked concerns among workers regarding potential job security, given the destruction of a critical shipyard section.

Lürssen has since confirmed a temporary suspension of shipyard operations, with a targeted resumption in specific areas starting July 3rd. The Federal Agency for Technical Relief and a dedicated fire watch team are on-site, working to cool the affected area to facilitate the investigation.

Local news reports suggest that the fire may have originated in a shed before spreading and causing a partial collapse of the building hall’s roof and exterior. While details regarding the specific destroyed vessel are scarce, it’s confirmed to be a superyacht under construction. Notably, Lürssen currently has several other yachts in various stages of construction, including the 107-meter Project Icecap and the 142.1-meter Project Ali Baba, which itself was involved in a separate incident in December 2023.

As the investigation into the fire’s cause progresses, this story will be updated with any further developments.

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