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Press Release | Dec. 29, 2023

Coast Guard assists vessel on fire near Dutch Harbor, Alaska

JUNEAU, Alaska – The Coast Guard is assisting a vessel on fire initially located approximately 225 miles southwest of Dutch Harbor, Alaska, Friday. 

At 4:40 a.m. Thursday, the 17th Coast Guard District Command Center in Juneau received report of a cargo hold fire aboard vessel Genius Star XI. The fire is contained but ongoing. 

The Coast Guard directed Genius Star XI to continue toward Dutch Harbor while an HC-130 airplane from Air Station Kodiak and Coast Guard Cutter Alex Haley (WMEC-39) were dispatched to assist. 

The Genius Star XI will remain offshore from Dutch Harbor as response crews prepare to assist and the Coast Guard will establish a safety zone around the vessel. The Genius Star XI is a 410-foot cargo vessel and is carrying lithium-ion batteries. 

“We applaud the crewmembers aboard Genius Star XI, whose swift actions kept the fire contained to this point,” said Captain Chris Culpepper, Commander of Coast Guard Sector Anchorage. “This will be an ongoing team effort as we work to safely extinguish the fire, provide any necessary medical care for the crew, and mitigate the dangers associated with a shipboard fire.” 

The cause of the fire remains unknown. An investigation into the cause of the fire will take place once response efforts are complete.  

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