The 58 meter long, 800 dwt fishing vessel Sur Este 709 caught fire while berthed in Montevideo, Uruguay. The fire started in the fish processing compartment and quickly intensified by the stored packing materials in the compartment. The crew Sur Este 709 was unable to contain the blaze and local fire fighters arrived on scene. Fire fighters tried to contain the fire, but the fire had now spread through most of the superstructure. Authorities evacuated the pier and nearby vessels from the possible dangers of the fire spreading and the toxic dense smoke emitting from the holds of the trawler.
A short time later tugs were requested to tow the trawler away from the docks. Authorities feared there was a strong threat of explosion from ammonia cylinder tankers stored on board. The trawler was towed some 300 meters away from the piers to a nearby anchorage where tugs and fire boats continued fire fighting efforts through out the night.
The Sur Este 709 became so waterlogged that it capsized and partially sank on its port side. Authorities placed booms around the trawler to contain any pollution released. Reports state the fire has gutted the vessel and it is a constructive loss. No reports of injuries.
The 99 meter long, 2708 dwt fishing vessel Juvel caught fire while berthed in the port of Montevideo, Uruguay. The fire started in a cabin during the early morning hours of July 9. The fire released out dense smoke with toxic gases. The crew were unable to extinguish the flames and requested assistance. Firefighters assisted by port Tugs and the Navy were able to bring the blaze under control by late afternoon. One of the 10 crew on board the Juvel sustained injuries and was taken to hospital for treatment. The amount of damage to the Juvel was not reported.
The 322 meter long, 266,141 dwt VLOC bulk carrier Stellar Daisy sank in the South Atlantic Ocean some 2000 miles off Montevideo, Uruguay. The Stellar Daisy had departed from Brasil bound for China on March 26 with 24 crew on board.
On March 31, one of the crew of the vessel sent out a text message to the shipping company stating the vessel was taking on water and was sinking. Afterwards, the company tried to contact the vessel, but all attempts failed.
Uruguayan Navy and Brasilian authorities were alerted when an emergency satellite signal had been received from the Stellar Daisy. A search and rescue operation was launched in the area of the signal. Four nearby commercial vessels were asked to assist in search effort while Brasilian Air Force dispatched a fix wing aircraft from Rio de Janeiro.
On April 1, the Uruguayan Navy reported finding an oil sheen and flotsam along with a strong smell of fuel. A short time later two liferafts from the Stellar Daisy were located by one of the commercial vessels. Two of the 24 crew were found inside the lifeboats. The search continued for the remaining missing 22 crewmen. The Stellar Daisy had six lifeboats on board, two 30-seat lifeboats and four 16-seat lifeboats.
Early reports suggest the Stellar Daisy had lost stability and quickly sank. One report suggested the bulk carrier had capsized and sank. Another report suggest a cargo shift could explain the cause of stability. Cargoes like liquefied nickel has been documented to have caused ore bulk carriers to become unbalanced and suddenly sink.