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Inquiry set up after 3 die in cruise liner fire

A fatal fire in which 3 people died on the cruise liner Oceania Insignia has prompted an investigation by the ship's owners.

The liner was docked at the island of St Lucia when a fire was believed to have started in an engine room.

Fatal Burns

Cruise liner holiday accident

According to Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, owners of the Oceania, 2 contractors and 1 crew member were fatally burned in the blaze.

One member of the crew was hospitalised on the island, reportedly suffering from smoke-induced respiratory depression.

The tragedy occurred on Thursday 11 December, 4 days into a 10-day tour of the Caribbean from Puerto Rico to Miami.

Passengers safe, but tour cancelled

Jason Lasecki, a spokesman for Norwegian, confirmed that the liner's 656 passengers were safely evacuated and the tour was suspended.

"We extend our deepest condolences to families during this very difficult time," Mr Lasecki said, adding that customers would receive full refunds and that charter flights would transfer them to Florida.

The firm also pledged to provide accommodation in Miami before returning passengers by air to their homes.

Investigation underway

Officials from the US National Transportation Safety Board are due to assist with an inquiry set up by the Marshall Islands, in which the Insignia is registered.

The 16-year-old liner was refurbished in 2014, re-joining the owner's cruise fleet in May after working 2 years as a charter vessel.

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