The 229 meter long, 25765 dwt car carrier Asian Empire caught fire in the Pacific Ocean some 740 kilometers south of Shionomisaki, Japan. The fire started in the vessel’s storeroom and quickly got out of control. Unable to contain the blaze, the crew sent out a distress call before the 24 crew abandoned ship into the vessel’s two life rafts. Coast Guard coordinated efforts with the refrigerated vessel Asian Adonis changed course to the scene. The Adonis was able to recover all the Asian Empire crew from their life rafts. There were no reported injuries. The Asian Empire crew were taken to Saipan. Reports state the Asian Empire was still ablaze and adrift. The Asian Empire was en route to Panama with a cargo of vehicles.