The OMI Charger was a single-hulled oil tanker built in 1969 and used by the OMI Corporation.
On October 9
while the tanker was anchored at Boliver Roads near Galveston, Texas
, work began on sealing a previously discovered leak in a cargo tank. When a crew member lit an arc welder
inside a tank, it ignited gasoline vapors, causing a tremendous explosion which killed three crew members and injured seven. The subsequent fire burned for five hours, and the ship was a total loss.
A US Coast Guard investigation determined that the cargo tank had been improperly cleared and insufficiently tested prior to the incident.