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Four People Found Dead After Ferry Fire in Greece

ferry fire greece
A fire rushed through a ferry traveling from Greece to Italy, and four people have died. Credit: AMNA

Search and rescue teams have discovered the bodies of two men on the ferry headed from Greece to Italy, six days after it caught on fire.

The bodies of two men were the third and fourth to be discovered on Thursday in the burned-out hulk of the ship since search and rescue operations began on the Euroferry Olympia.

The second body was found late Wednesday evening. All of the victims of the fire were found in the garages on the ship.

The second person who perished from the blaze was found just outside of his truck.

Seven people remain missing after fire on ferry in Greece

A 58-year-old truck driver from Greece, who was found on Sunday, was the first person confirmed dead in the wake of the fire. No details regarding the identities of the other three victims have been released.

Members of the Fire Service’s special Disaster Management Unit were able to locate the man from Belarus who was seen moving near the stern of the ship. Incredibly, he was unharmed.

Thankfully, most of the passengers were evacuated quickly after the fire began on Friday, but a total of seven people remain missing, all of whom are truck drivers who boarded the ship to transport goods throughout Europe.

According to the Greek Truckers’ Union, the reason that the missing are all truck drivers is because they chose to sleep in their vehicles instead of the cabins on the ferry, which they called “unsuitable.”

Grimaldi Lines, the owner of the ferry, stated that the accusation was false, as the ferry was inspected two days before the fire and it was deemed satisfactory.

There were around 300 passengers and crew aboard the ship at the time of the fire, and nearly all of them were evacuated safely.

Firefighters are still fighting to put out the blaze on the Euroferry Olympia, which was towed to the port of Astakos on Wednesday to aid in the search and rescue operation.

The search has not been easy — operations were paused on Monday evening due to still-smoldering fires, dense smoke, and high temperatures on the ship made recovery impossible. Many of these fires were still blazing in the vessel as of Tuesday, but have since largely dwindled down.

There are also fears that there are a higher number of missing people than initially believed, as there were likely a number of passengers on the ferry who were not included on the official list of passengers.

This realization hit rescuers after they helped two people from Afghanistan — who were not on the passenger logs — evacuate from the ship after the fire.

At the same time, a team of the Hellenic Bureau for Marine Casualties Investigation (HBMCI) is already at the island of Corfu to investigate the causes of the fire, in collaboration with the relevant Italian authority, called the Direzione Generale Investigation Ferroviarie e Maritime (DIGIFEMA).

The families of the three missing Greek nationals are also on Corfu, accompanied by a Hellenic Coast Guard officer/psychologist, by order of Shipping & Island Policy Minister Giannis Plakiotakis.

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