Tugboat headed to burning ship in Pacific Ocean

January 4, 2019
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In this Dec. 31, 2018 photo provided by the U.S. Coast Guard, a Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules aircrew flies over the 650-foot Sincerity Ace on fire 1,800 nautical miles northwest of Oahu in the Pacific Ocean. The U.S. Coast Guard is suspending its search for a crew member from a vessel carrying cars from Japan to Hawaii who went missing after the ship caught fire. The Coast Guard made the decision to suspend the search for the Sincerity Ace crew member on Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2019. (U.S. Coast Guard via AP)

HONOLULU (AP) — A tugboat will try to recover bodies of crewmembers who abandoned a ship that caught fire while carrying cars from Japan to Hawaii.

The Sincerity Ace, a 650-foot (198-meter) car carrier, had 21 crewmembers on board when the fire started Monday.

Ships in the area rescued 16 people. Four were listed as unresponsive in the water and the U.S. Coast Guard suspended its search for one crewmember listed as missing.

Japanese shipping company Shoei Kisen Kaisha Ltd. owns the Panamanian-flagged vessel.

Company spokesman Darrell Wilson says the vessel could still be on fire.

He says the tugboat is expected to arrive Sunday or Monday to tow the ship and try to recover bodies.

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