Fishing boat catches fire in waters off the southwestern coast of the Republic of Korea on January 17 (Source: yonhap)

Seoul (VNA) – A Vietnamese sailor and a Chinese national went missing when their fishing vessel caught fire in waters off the southwestern coast of the Republic of Korea on January 17, local authorities said.

They are believed to have jumped off the boat right after the fire broke out. A search for them is underway.

Another Vietnamese sailor suffered burns and was sent to a hospital, Yonhap News reported

The 85-tonne vessel carrying 12 crewmen caught fire in the sea off about 6.4 kilometers northeast of Narodo, an island in Goheung county, South Jeolla province, at around 8:25 am, according to the Coast Guard of the RoK.

The fire has been extinguished by the authorities. Coast Guard officials are investigating the exact cause of the blaze.-VNA