Felicity Ace

Details
Instruct Us
Name Felicity Ace
Date 16 February 2022
Year of Build 2005
Casualty type Fire
Vessel Type Vehicle Carrier - VT MVE
Report

------------------UPDATE 3-----------------

1 March 2022

We have received reports that vehicle carrier, FELICITY ACE, unexpectedly sank today, 1 March 2022, in a position approximately 220 nautical miles off the Azores, after developing a serious list to starboard whilst under tow to a port of refuge.

Recovery claims will arise in respect of the total loss of vehicles stowed on board the vessel. Given some of the car brands involved, these claims will be substantial.

We recommend that you contact us if you are concerned with any vehicles stowed on board the vessel so that we may take steps to protect your recovery rights against the carriers concerned.

------------------UPDATE 2-----------------

21 February 2022

Latest reports of the fire on board vehicle carrier, FELICITY ACE, indicate that the fire has spread throughout the entire length of the vessel and it appears that everything above the waterline has been burnt, although vehicles stowed below the waterline will likely also be affected by burning debris from upper decks and fire-fighting water.

The vessel is reported to be stable, in a position approximately 90 nautical miles south of Horta in the Azores, but has developed a slight list.

It is reported that a team of 16 salvage experts has been deployed to the Azores to assist with the fire-fighting operations, but ocean-going tugs are not expected to reach the vessel until 23 February 2022.

The Port Captain of Horta port is reported to have advised that the vessel will not be permitted to enter the port because of environmental concerns. Consequently, the vessel may be taken under tow to the Bahamas or to a European port as a place of refuge.

It is now reported that there were a total of 3,965 vehicles stowed on board the vessel, including vehicles manufactured by Porsche, Audi, Volkswagen and Lamborghini, with an estimated total value of approximately USD 255 million.

Recovery claims will arise and detailed investigations will be required to establish the cause of the fire and the steps taken to contain it. We have a fire expert on standby in this respect.

Please contact us urgently if you are concerned with any vehicles affected by this fire so that we may start taking immediate steps to protect your interests.

------------------UPDATE 1-----------------

17 February 2022

* Please see below updated information concerning the casualty to vehicle carrier, FELICITY ACE:

* We are advised that there are approximately 4,000 vehicles stowed to the vessel, the majority of which are reported to be manufactured by Porsche and Volkswagen.

* Salvage services are to be rendered to the vessel by professional salvors acting under LOF terms.

* Consequently, Salvage Security will be required to be provided by a party acceptable to the Salvors or the Council of Lloyd's on behalf of cargo interests and we are likely to be able to assist in that regard. Security provided by WKW is acceptable to the Council of Lloyd's and the salvors concerned.

* It is not currently clear if shipowners intend to declare General Average as a consequence of this casualty. If they do so, General Average security will also be required from all Cargo Interests prior to the delivery of their cargo and we will also be able to assist in this respect.

* We have retained fire experts and cargo surveyors and we may be able to offer economies of scale in respect of such third party costs required to investigate the cause of the fire and extent of damages to cargo.

* We therefore recommend that you contact us urgently if you are concerned with any cargo stowed on board this vessel so that we can immediately start to protect your interests.

------------------ORIGINAL-----------------

* We have received reports that vehicle carrier, FELICITY ACE, issued a distress signal and reported having experienced a fire in one of the cargo decks, in a position approximately 90 nautical miles south-southwest of the Azores on 16 February 2022.

* The Ponta Delgada Maritime Search and Rescue Coordination Center have taken control of the search and rescue operation and it is reported that a Navy Patrol Vessel and four merchant vessels in the area have currently been directed to assist the vessel.

* It is reported that all 22 crew members have been evacuated from the vessel and that the vessel is currently drifting in an easterly direction.

* We understand that the vessel is likely to be taken under tow by tugs to the nearest safe waters.

* Early reports indicate that Porsche and Volkswagen cars were stowed to the vessel.

* It is likely that General Average / Salvage and Recovery issues may arise as a result of this casualty.

* Salvage Security may be required to be provided by a party acceptable to the Salvors or the Council of Lloyd's on behalf of cargo interests and W K Webster may be able to assist in that regard. Security provided by WKW is acceptable to the Council of Lloyd's and widely preferred by professional Salvors.

* If General Average is declared, General Average security will be required from all Cargo Interests prior to the delivery of their cargo and we are also likely to be able to assist in that regard.

* We recommend that you contact us urgently if you are concerned with any cargo on board this vessel so that we can immediately start taking steps to protect your interests.

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