Specifically, the incident took place at approximately 0700 on Wednesday morning, when the port authority of Reggio Calabria received a mayday from the merchant ship Bellatrix reporting an uncontrollable fire in the engine room. The Bellatrix was located more than 180 miles southeast of Catania, Sicily, within the Italian SAR area of responsibility, with 12 crewmembers on board.
Therefore, the authorities coordinated the rescue and ordered the diversion of multiple surface assets to the scene. In addition, a coastal Air Force P180 patrol plane launched from Catania along with with an ATR 42 SAR aircraft from Pescara.
Although the Italian authorities were underway to the scene, the merchant ship Arife, which was transiting the area nearby, rescued all twelve crewmembers from the freighter.
Following, the owner of Bellatrix has dispatched a rescue tug which will arrive on scene in a timeframe of 36 hours to tow the vessel to Aliaga, Turkey.
Concluding, the coast guard reports that the vessels is in ballast, and there is no risk of pollution in the area, while the agency's aircraft is monitoring the vessel for any changes.