Yantian Express finally arrives in Halifax after January cargo fire

The Yantian Express container ship sits in the Bedford Basin after arriving in Halifax on Monday morning. – Ryan Taplin

A container ship that caught fire and burned for days in the middle of the ocean in January arrived in Halifax, its intended destination, on Monday.

The Yantian Express sailed from Freeport, Bahamas, on May 15, four months after its arrival, the vessel’s owner Hapag-Lloyd said in a news release.

In February, a surveyor found that 202 containers were most likely a total loss due to the fire, a previous release said. In all, 460 containers were inspected for damage.

Most of the remaining cargo was reloaded onto the Yantian Express on April 12, but some cargo didn’t have security coverage and couldn’t be taken to Halifax.

The Yantian Express was making its way to Halifax from Colombo, Sri Lanka, when a container caught fire on Jan. 3 and spread to several others. Poor weather conditions delayed the crew’s attempts to extinguish the blaze.

Seventeen Filipino seafarers were taken to Halifax after being evacuated from the Yantian Express on Jan. 5 and 6.

The remaining five of the 22-member crew returned to the vessel on Jan. 9 after the fire was brought under control