Survivor found in burning Greek ferry

A survivor was rescued from the stern of a still burning passenger ferry in Greece.

A Coastguard spokesman said the man, a Belarusian, was found on the left rear side of the Euroferry Olympia in good condition.

The Italian-owned ferry, which was carrying more than 290 passengers and crew, as well as 153 trucks and 32 cars, caught fire three hours after leaving the Greek port of Igoumenitsa in northwestern Greece on Friday bound for Brindisi, Italy.

A rescued survivor of the ferry fire, in a yellow vest, arrives in Corfu (Stamatis Katopodis/InTime News/AP)

The Greek Coast Guard and other boats evacuated around 280 people to the neighboring island of Corfu.

Eleven people are still missing.

The vessel is being slowly towed to the port of Kassiopi, Corfu, by three tugs, authorities said.

Firefighters are still battling the blaze and thick smoke hangs over the ship.

ferry on fire
The Euroferry Olympia is tilted slightly due to the volume of water being poured into it to fight the flames (Petros Giannakouris/AP)

Extreme temperatures in parts of the ship prevented rescuers from searching the entire ship.

The ferry is lying lightly from the water that was poured on it to fight the fire, but authorities say it is not at risk of capsizing.

A Greek prosecutor on the island of Corfu has ordered an investigation into the cause of the fire. The Italian company that operates the ferry said the fire started in a slipway where vehicles were parked.

The ship’s captain and two engineers were arrested on Friday but released the same day.

ferry on fire
The Euroferry Olympia is slowly towed to Kassiopi in Corfu (Petros Giannakouris/AP)

The passengers described a dramatic rescue situation.

A truck driver said: “We heard the alarm. We thought it was some kind of exercise. But we saw through the portholes that people were running.

“When I got on deck I saw smoke and children. Luckily they (the crew) acted quickly.

Officials said those rescued included citizens of Albania, Turkey, Bulgaria, Romania, Greece, Italy and Lithuania.

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