Admiral: Firefighting system turned off when blaze started on Navy ship

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SAN DIEGO (AP) — A Navy official said Monday a fire suppression system was inoperable when a blaze erupted aboard the USS Bonhomme Richard in San Diego.

Rear Adm. Philip Sobeck said the Halon gas system had been turned off while the amphibious assault ship was undergoing maintenance work.

The fire erupted Sunday morning and continues to burn. It broke out in an area where cardboard and tri-wall supplies were stored and firefighters initially fought it with water until they had to withdraw. Halon is a liquefied compressed gas that disrupts the chemical process of a fire.

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