The Australian navy patrol boat HMAS Bundaberg became engulfed in flames today during maintenance work in a Brisbane dry dock.
More than 60 firefighters worked to extinguish the fire.
The 56-meter ship, which is used for surveillance, caught fire while undergoing maintenance repairs in a shipyard docking shed. It sustained significant damage, although the cause of the fire is still unknown, Channel 9 News reported.
The boat was undergoing extensive repairs, including panel restoration, the station reported. The fire had most likely been triggered by those repairs, John Watson, the assistant commissioner for the Brisbane region of the Queensland Fire and Emergency Services, told the network.
“The fire was in the rear third, inside section of the vessel,” Watson said. “It was very difficult for firefighters to access as it was generating great amounts of heat and smoke.”
Watson said the boat had significant damage that will be assessed in an investigation.
The HMAS Bundaberg has a range of 3,000 nautical miles at 12 knots and a maximum speed of about 25 knots, according to the Australian Navy website. It has three guns in its armament, including a 25 mm Rafael M242 Bushmaster and two 12.7mm machine guns.