Specialists are being winched onto a car transporter ship diverted to Hampshire after it caught fire last night, 40 miles off Harwich in Essex.
The crew on board the Courage reported the fire to the UK Coastguard at Dover Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre just before 10pm on Tuesday.
The coastguard had put the RAF Wattisham helicopter on standby, but it was not needed.
The crew used an inbuilt CO2 system to flood a large area which they believed had put the fire out and continued their journey. However because of the CO2 the corridors and areas around the deck cannot be accessed.
The vessel was diverted to Southampton. It is now off Sandown on the isle of Wight where it is being monitored by the the National Maritime Operations Centre. Hampshire Fire & Rescue Service and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency are working together to make the situation safe.
A number of specialists from Hampshire Fire and Rescue assessment team will look at where the CO2 was used to make sure it’s safe for the pilot to get through to take the vessel alongside in Southampton.
Counter-pollution staff from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency are monitoring the situation but say it is all contained.
Hampshire Fire & Rescue Service have said that the fire is now contained and under control. Five maritime response officers from the service have been winched aboard the vessel to assess the situation.