The circumstances are still unclear on what caused a fire on the Kharg, one of Iran’s largest warships, on Wednesday. The fire soon raged out of control and caused the ship to sink into the Gulf of Oman. This is the latest black eye suffered by Iran’s Navy. 

The Kharg’s Fiery Demise

According to the Fars News agency, the fire began in the boiler room of the 679-foot Kharg. After a 20-hour damage control and rescue operation, the ship sank near the Iranian port of Jask, just about 800 miles southeast of Tehran in the Gulf of Oman near the Strait of Hormuz. All of the sailors were saved, however, 33 suffered injuries in the blaze.

The Associated Press, via Planet Labs’ satellite photos, showed the Kharg in the Gulf around midday Tuesday with no sign of any fire or distress onboard.

The Kharg had a crew of 400 sailors and cadets and was used as a seagoing resupply ship. It could lift heavy cargo and had the capability to launch and land helicopters on her deck. The Iranian government lists the Kharg as a “training ship.” The ship was used to train cadets from the Imam Khomeini Naval University on the Caspian Sea.