Harboring Heartbreak

No Casualties Reported in Massive Fire at Bali’s Southernmost Port of Benoa

A large fire on Monday, July 9, 2018, laid waste to tens of fishing and inter-island cargo boats moored in Bali’s Benoa Bay sending huge clouds of black smoke into the departure path of aircraft operating from the Island’s Ngurah Rai International Airport. 

The blaze that started in the early hours of the day eventually spread to an estimated 40 vessels, most located outside the reach of firemen’s hoses.

Police and dire officials report no casualties resulting from the dramatic fire.

Beritabali.com reports that Bali’s Provincial Chief of Police, Inspector General Petrus Reinhard Golose, inspected the still-active fire scene at 11:00 am on Monday where he vowed to thoroughly investigate the source of the fire.

Strong wind conditions in Bali and the presence of fuel on board the burning boats further complicated firefighters efforts to quell the flames. Meanwhile, concern has been expressed from some quarters that leaking fuel from the burnt out ships threatens the delicate environmental balance of the nearby mangrove nature reserve.

Preliminary reports indicate the fire may have started in the engine room of the Motor Vessel Cilacap Jaya Karya owned by PT.AKFI, spreading initially to the nearby Motor Vessels owned by PT. Intimas Surya and  PT. Bandar Nelayan, before engulfing vessels covering a large area of the port where fishing vessles are normally berthed side-by-side when in port. 

No precise cost of the damage caused by the blaze has been made although some sources estimated final costs will exceed hundreds of billions of rupiahs.

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