FV Victor 89 as it catches in the territorial waters of Cuyo, Palawan. (Photo from the Philippine Coast Guard on Facebook)

Five fishermen were saved by rescuers after their fishing vessel, the FV Victor 89, took fire and sank off Imalaguan Island, Barangay San Carlos, Cuyo, Palawan.

The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) said Tuesday that according to its crew, the incident occurred around 4 a.m. when an explosion was heard in the auxiliary engine of the fiberglass fishing vessel, which was followed by a fire.

The Coast Guard Station Eastern Palawan (CGS), Cuyo Municipal Police Station (MPS), and fishermen from Frabelle Fishing Corp. worked together to rescue the five fishermen. Two of them suffered first-degree burns on their left arm and back and were taken to Cuyo District Hospital for medical treatment.

The fishermen recounted that they sailed from Navotas Fish Port on March 2, 2023, to fish in the Sulu Sea. They were anchored near Imalaguan Island when the fire broke out.

The fiberglass boat FV Victor 89. (Photo from the Philippine Coast Guard on Facebook)

At around 9:40 AM, FV Victor 89 sank, the PCG said.

The Marine Environmental Protection Force of the Philippine Coast Guard immediately deployed an oil spill boom to control the potential threat of an oil spill in the area.