Emerald Waterways has reported that a late night fire broke out at the Den Breejen Shipyard in the Netherlands where the company’s newest ship, the Emerald Belle, was under construction.

Glen Moroney, chairman of the Scenic Group, and owner of the Emerald Waterways line, said: “At 00:30 Sunday morning, the owner of the Den Breejen Shipyard was alerted to a fire on the Emerald Belle. Despite the efforts of firefighters, who were quickly at the scene, the damage is significant. We are grateful and relieved that nobody was onboard at the time and most importantly, there were no injuries to any shipyard worker or firefighters to our knowledge.”

Although construction was well along the firefighting system onboard was not yet operational. At this point there is no confirmed cause of the fire but a full investigation by the yard and firefighting authorities is being carried out.

The previously scheduled launch date of April may well be delayed.

In that regard, the lines operations and reservations teams are reviewing all bookings to see how best to accommodate guests on similar departures on other Emerald ships or possibly on her sister company, Scenic.

Guests and agents with bookings will be contacted by the Manchester call centre team in the next few days to discuss options.

Agents may also call the Emerald Waterways’ reservations line on 0800-270 7017.

A dedicated web page – emeraldwaterways.co.uk/emeraldbelle – will provide ongoing updates on the affected sailing.

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