Barges carrying scrap vehicles burn near Mobile

Two barges carrying crushed vehicles for scrap caught fire Sunday morning near Mobile, Ala., according to the Coast Guard and local authorities.

There were no reported injuries or damage to other vessels during the incident, which started just before 10 a.m. near mile marker 3 on the Mobile River, close to the Cochrane-Africatown Bridge.

The fire started on one barge carrying old cars and spread to another. Separated from their tow and aground, the barges could only be approached from the water and the Mobile County Fire Department dispatched boat teams to fight the blaze.

Smoke billows from barges carrying junked cars on the Mobile River May 6, 2018. Mobile Fire-Rescue photo.

Smoke billows from barges carrying junked cars on the Mobile River May 6, 2018. Mobile Fire-Rescue photo.

The Coast Guard Dauphin Island station dispatched a 45’ response boat-medium to the scene, and the crew escorted vessel traffic through the area. Alabama state troopers also responded.

No crewmembers were on board the barges when the fire broke out and the cause was under investigation, according to the Coast Guard and Mobile Fire-Rescue officials.

About the author

Kirk Moore

Associate Editor Kirk Moore was a reporter for the Asbury Park Press for over 30 years before joining WorkBoat in 2015. He wrote several award-winning stories on marine, environmental, coastal and military issues that helped drive federal and state government policy changes. He has also been a field editor for WorkBoat’s sister publication, National Fisherman, for almost 25 years. Moore was awarded the Online News Association 2011 Knight Award for Public Service for the “Barnegat Bay Under Stress,” 2010 series that led to the New Jersey state government’s restoration plan. He lives in West Creek, N.J.

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