More than 500 evacuated in ship fire near Puerto Rico

FILE - In this April 30, 2015, file photo, people gather in front of the Puerto Rico’s Capitol building. (AP Photo/Ricardo Arduengo, File)

SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico (AP) — More than 500 passengers were being evacuated on Wednesday from a ship that caught fire about a mile off Puerto Rico’s north coast.

The fire was still burning aboard the Caribbean Fantasy, a combination cruise and ferry vessel, as the U.S. Coast Guard prepared a mass-rescue craft to bring passengers safely to the San Juan harbor.

No injuries have been reported and no one is missing, Coast Guard spokesman Ricardo Castrodad said in a phone interview.

The fire erupted in the engine room and is currently spreading to the rest of the ship, Miami-based Coast Guard spokeswoman Marilyn Fajardo said by phone.

She said passengers are sliding down into rescue rafts, with 50 people still on board as of late Wednesday morning.

The ships run several times weekly between Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic and was arriving in San Juan when the fire broke out, Castrodad said. It is unclear what caused the fire.

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