Tanker ship caught on fire off Indonesia's Lombok island

JAKARTA, March 26 (dpa): A tanker ship caught on fire off the coast of Indonesia’s West Nusa Tenggara province on Sunday, local media reported.

According to news broadcaster Kompas TV, the tanker is believed to belong to state-owned energy company Pertamina, as the vessel caught fire just off the coast of Pertamina’s oil depot in Ampenan, a city on the island of Lombok.

There were 17 people on board when the fire broke out at at 3 pm local time (0700 GMT). Of them, 14 have been evacuated from the vessel.

The remaining three reportedly died in the fire, according to witnesses and fishermen involved in evacuating the crew along with the local search and rescue agency.

Kompas TV footage showed flames coming from near the ship’s foremast and clouds of thick black smoke. - dpa

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