A huge fire has broken out in the fishing port of La Bajadilla in Marbella.
Flames and smoke swept over the town on the Costa del Sol as firefighters battled the blaze that broke out on the grounds of the Marina Marbella shipping company.
Ships worth millions of pounds are feared to have been destroyed in the massive blaze, with British boat owners expected to be among the casualties if confirmed.
A local report, yet to be confirmed by officials, said about 100 boats between 20 and 40 feet long were at the warehouse-like building that went up in flames.
British boat owners messaged each other last night via private WhatsApp groups expressing their concerns.
Police, fire and ambulances attended the warehouse in Marbella’s fishing port, known as La Bajadilla, near the city center at around 7pm.
The entrance to the port was cordoned off, but large crowds gathered as flames took hold of the building, which belongs to Marina Marbella and is believed to have been used for storage and boat repairs.
A spokesperson for Marbella Town Hall confirmed: “About 30 firefighters are fighting a fire at a maritime warehouse in the port of La Bajadilla.
“Local police, civil defense and health services are also nearby.”
The mayor of the city, Angela Munoz, added in a tweet: “I am following the development of the situation after a fire broke out at the Marina Marbella warehouse in the fishing port.
“No other nearby building was affected.”
The owners could not be reached for comment.
Marina Marbella was founded by two Swedish sailors who started their boating business in Marbella, but are now active in countries such as the UK and Portugal.
They offer a range of maintenance services including dry docking and winterizing.
Their other services include renting boats and assisting customers with the purchase and delivery of vessels.
According to a local Spanish report, the fire had started in a building where about 100 boats were stored or repaired
The report on ElDebate.com said, “In the warehouse were about 100 boats between 20 and 40 feet long. Many of them were worth millions of pounds.
“The building serves as a winter harbor, where boats are kept after they have been taken out of the water and some have been repaired.”
The cause of the fire is not clear.