A Greek ropax cut short its trip and returned to port to evacuate hundreds of passengers and vehicles after a fire broke out in its car hold on Saturday morning.

The blaze occurred on the 32,700-gt Olympic Champion (built 2000) just after the ANEK Lines-owned ferry left the port of Igoumenitsa, western Greece, to head for Venice.

The vessel docked again on its own steam and all 538 passengers and 79 crew were safely evacuated, Greece’s coastguard said in a statement.