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Canadian navy ship: Fire causes HMCS Protecteur towed to Hawaii

The HMCS Protecteur needed to be towed to Hawaii after a fire.
The HMCS Protecteur needed to be towed to Hawaii after a fire.
Oskar Garcia

A Canadian navy ship called the HMCS Protecteur had to be towed by a U.S. Navy ocean tug on Tuesday, March 4, 2014, after an engine fire started on board. According to NPR.org, the ship had nearly 300 crew members on board as it was on its way to Pearl Harbor in Hawaii with 20 sailors that ended up with minor injuries.

At the time of the fire on the Canadian navy ship, it was located in the Pacific Ocean, just north of Hawaii.

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Some of the passengers had been traveling with the Protecteur and were actually members of the crew's family. They were heading back home on the ship to Esquimalt, British Columbia.

"We signed on for an adventure, and we got one," Arlene Veenhof, a family member, told reporters after stepping off the destroyer. After walking onto the dock, Veenhof and the other passengers gave three cheers to the American crew who had escorted them.

Last week when the ship caught on fire in the Pacific Ocean, the U.S. Navy dispatched the USS Michael Murphy out to help and tow the Canadian navy ship back into Hawaii.

Out of the injured, there were 19 family members and one sailor who ended up with a cut on his hand.

Some of the crew members and families were simply sitting around relaxing or playing cards when lights wen off and alarms sounded. Many thought it was just a drill, but they soon realized that it was a real situation.

The crew was said to have worked very fast and get things under control.

"We stood there in amazement and watched the crew get organized and go. I don't think we ever felt in danger or in peril," Kehler said. "We watched them. They were well-organized, well-coordinated — you could tell they'd been practicing the drill for a long time."

The Canadian navy ship is expected to arrive in Pearl Harbor by sometime on Thursday.

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