MF Brim Explorer incident (updated regularly)

Information about reported incident onboard MF Brim Explorer 11.03.21.

On Thursday 11.03.21 at 16.37 a smoke alarm was reported onboard the sightseeing vessel, MF Brim Explorer. At the time of the incident, the ferry was located in the Oslofjord outside of Fredrikstad. The crew of four persons were safely evacuated and the ferry was towed ashore near Vallø in Tønsberg. There were no passengers on board at the time of the event and no personal injuries have been reported.

Corvus Energy immediately established an emergency board to monitor the situation and a local team was present at the site within 30 minutes to support the firebrigade, police and shipowner.

Status Friday 12.03.21:

Corvus is continuously supporting all stakeholders on how to handle the incident. Temperatures are reported to be down to normal, but no one is allowed to go onboard the vessel yet. A technical investigation team has been established to support the process of finding the cause of the incident. We expect to be able to go onboard early next week. Corvus Energy aims for full transparency and will continue to support all stakeholders in the process going forward. 

Status Monday 15.03.21

We have still not been able to board the ship as all eventual gases need to be removed first. The Corvus technical team is on-site supporting the other parties in the ongoing operations.

The situation is well under control and all parties are cooperating closely on-site to prepare for the next operation: Nitrogen will be supplied below the deck of the vessel to prevent ignition as nitrogen cools and suffocates. At the same time, eventual gases will be removed (sucked out) through the ventilation hatch from the engine compartment and into a tank. Neither nitrogen nor the gases sucked out will pose any danger to the public.

Status Wednesday 17.03.21

The operation to flush the vessel with nitrogen onboard Brim has been successful and the safety zone is removed. The fire brigade was on board and inspected the engine room and opened the door to the battery room. It is confirmed that the thermal event onboard the vessel includes the battery room. The cause of the thermal event is still to be investigated.

The fire brigade and police have handled the situation in a most professional way. Corvus is happy that our procedures and recommendations were followed to the point and that all parties, by working closely together, have prevented a more severe outcome.

Kripos will be responsible for the further investigation. They have asked for support from Corvus in the further investigation process which will start Thursday 18.03

Status Monday 22.03.21

Kripos investigation is ongoing, but no final conclusion has been made yet.

Sjøfartsdirektoratet (Norwegian Maritime Authorities) sent out the following message earlier today about the sister vessel, MS Bard. The message is about needed improvements on the ventilation arrangement based on the findings onboard Brim.

We will update this page with more information as soon as we know more

Additional information

On the Vestfold fire brigade’s Facebook page (link below), you can find relevant information (only in Norwegian) and pictures:

Link to Vestfold Firebrigade FB page with updates (In Norwegian)

We get a lot of questions from various parties – we will post the questions and the answers in the section below (if new information emerges, the text will be updated):

Corvus Q&A

Q: Is it confirmed that it has been a fire onboard Brim?

A: No, it has been confirmed that a thermal event has occurred. The crew has confirmed seeing smoke during the event and Vestfold fire brigade measured high temperatures outside the engine and battery room in the hours following the event. The temperatures decreased rapidly and were back to normal in the morning of Friday 12.03.21

Q: Is it confirmed if the incident has been in the engine room or in the battery room

A: We know that it has been in the battery room, but the root cause is still beeing investigated.

Q: Do you know when you will be allowed to board?

A: We have been onboard together with the investigation team. Kripos is leading the investigation. As soon as the vessel is released to the shipowner we can start our work as needed.

Q: Will this incident have consequences for other installatons with Corvus Dolphin Batteries?

A: No – not as we know.

Q: Who was involved in the rescue operation?

FFI, Kripos, Corvus, Brim Explorer and Vestfold fire brigade has worked together closely on the rescue operation to prevent an explosion caused by eventual gases. By working closely together the rescue operation is considered highly successful.

Q: Who is involved in the further investigation

The further investigation to find the cause of the event will be lead by Kripos. The Shipowner, Corvus and the Integrator will support Kripos during this process.

Q: How long will it take until we have the answer?

We dont know yet. As soon as we get on board we will be able to get indications of what has happened, but we must analyze the findings thoroughly before we can say exactly what has happened. This can take time as there are many parties involved.

Q: Have the safety functions on the battery systems worked ?

We have strong indications that the built-in security functions have worked as intended. Temperature is was down to ambient temperature (7-12 degrees celsius).

Q: When will the vessel be back in operation?

The Shipowner has confirmed that they hope to be back in operation in may 2021

About Brim Explorer

The Brim Explorer is a 24-meter Catamaran built in 2019. The vessel has two battery room onboard with a total of 790kWh of lightweight batteries installed

For media related questions, please contact

Mr Geir Bjørkeli, CEO of Corvus Energy

Email: gbjorkeli@corvusenergy.com

For other questions or related information, please contact

Mr Halvard Hauso, CCO in Corvus Energy

Email: hhauso@corvusenergy.com