Fire breaks out in P&O Cruises Iona ship's Atrium

   October 28, 2023 ,   Accidents

Passengers were evacuated from the P&O Cruises UK ship Iona following an incident where the battery of a mobility scooter exploded and caught fire. This occurred shortly before the ship was scheduled to participate in search efforts for crew members aboard the ill-fated cargo ship Verity.

The fire originated in the Atrium/central hub area at ~5 PM SBT (~4 PM UTC) last Saturday, October 21, while the vessel was berthed in homeport Southampton. Footage from the ship's 3-level Atrium depicted flames on a balcony, accompanied by the activation of fire alarms and the assembly of passengers on the ground floor (deck 6).

According to a P&O UK spokesperson, the fire resulted from a lithium battery on a mobility scooter but was promptly extinguished by the ship's fire detection systems. The incident caused minimal delays, and the liner continued the voyage, arriving in Hamburg Germany, where Iona remained docked for some time.

In response to distress calls, MS Iona assisted the cargo ship Verity after a collision with the cargo vessel Polesie in the North Sea, which ultimately led to the sinking of the cargo ship. Tragically, one crew lost his life, while two others were rescued from the sea.

Regrettably, the search for the remaining four crew members was called off on Thursday.

For more P&O Iona incidents and accidents see the ship's CruiseMinus page.