MSC Flaminia survivors expected to arrive in England Wednesday

At 984 feet long, the MSC Flaminia is among the large post-Panamax class of container ships. (File/Staff)

Most survivors of the MSC Flaminia, a large container ship abandoned Saturday in the mid-Atlantic following an explosion and fire, are expected to reach England Wednesday night aboard an oil tanker that rescued them from lifeboats.

The Flaminia, whose last port of call was Charleston on July 8, was bound for Antwerp with a crew of 23 plus two passengers. It was carrying 2,876 shipping containers from North American and Caribbean ports.

One Flaminia crewman died of injuries from the fire, one remains missing, and another is in a burn ward in Portugal, according to the ship’s owner, German company Reederei NSB. Two other crewmen, with less serious injuries, are in hospitals in the Azores.

The cause of the incident and the condition of the ship, which has been drifting and burning since Saturday, won’t be known until oceangoing salvage tugs with firefighting equipment reach the scene later today or tomorrow, according to NSB.

“This tragedy onboard MSC Flaminia has deeply afflicted me,” said Helmut Ponath, CEO of Reederei NSB. “Our thoughts are with the families of the deceased and the missing sailor as well as with the rescued and their families.”

The crew were German, Polish and Filipino nationals. There has been no information available as to the nationality of the two passengers.

Read more in Wednesday’s editions of The Post and Courier. Follow David Slade on Twitter @DSladeNews.