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Nine firefighters injured in Florida ship explosion

The ship, which was near Jacksonville, was scheduled to leave the area when the explosion occurred.
Image: Firefighters battle ship fire
Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department battle a vehicle-carrying ship fire near Blount Island Thursday night.@JFRDJAX

Nine firefighters were injured Thursday after an explosion on an auto-hauling ship on the Florida coast, officials said.

Jacksonville Fire and Rescue tweeted about the explosion shortly after 7 p.m. and the injuries. Citing the department, NBC affiliate WTLV reported that nine had been taken to a hospital, including some with serious injuries.

The ship was at Blount Island, near Jacksonville, the department said. None of the ship’s crew members were hurt in a fire that began on the ship’s seventh deck, the station reported.

Fire and Rescue Chief Keith Powers called a ship fire “one of the most dangerous situations a firefighter can encounter,” the station reported.

Ship records show the vessel is Norwegian and was scheduled to leave Jacksonville.

It wasn’t immediately clear what started the fire.