The 351 dwt fishing vessel Taigan caught fire while near the port at Wakkanai, Japan. The vessel had arrived at Wakkanai with a cargo of crabs caught off Sakhalin Island near Korsakov, Russia. The fire started in the vessel’s superstructure and quickly spread through the vessel. Of the 23 crewmen on board the Taigan, six were trapped below decks and perished in the blaze. Another three men were taken to hospital for minor burns. The local authorities were able to extinguish the fire a few hours later. The cause of the fire is under investigation. Reports state the vessel’s cargo of crabs may have been illegally caught. Other reports state the vessel had change names and ownership several time over the last few years.