At least two people were killed in what has been described as a large explosion aboard an inland tanker berthed in Duisburg, Germany.
Local media reports said the blast occurred on Thursday morning aboard the German-flagged MT Julius Rütgers at the Meiderich shipyard.
The bodies of two workers have been recovered and authorities were searching for a third missing worker.
Photos of video of the aftermath show that the explosion occurred in the forward part of ship, causing flames and thick black smoke that could be seen for miles.
The cause of the investigation has not been determined, reports say.
The fire has since been brought under control.
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