Smokestack fire aboard Cape May-Lewes ferry

Officials believe an ember in the smokestack helped spark a fire aboard a Cape May-Lewes ferry.

The fire broke out with the Motor Vessel Delaware docked at the pier in Cape May around 2:20 a.m. Friday. No passengers were aboard the vessel.

Delaware River and Bay Authority spokesman Jim Salmon says the only person on board, a night engineer, and the local fire department extinguished the fire.

Salmon says the preliminary estimate is there was only minor damage. But the boat will not operate Friday. Two other ferries will ply the route between Cape May and Lewes, Delaware.

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The vessel is 320-feet long and was renovated in 1996. It can carry between 800 and 1,000 passengers and approximately 100 vehicles.

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