Maine’s congressional delegation on Thursday praised the firefighters that helped battle the blaze in the U.S.S. Miami.

Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, said she was impressed by the work of the 150 firefighters from more than 15 communities in Maine, New Hampshire and Massachusetts.

“I understand this was an incredibly challenging and dangerous fire to fight because the heat and smoke were so intense and, at times, firefighters were operating in total darkness,” said Collins, who spoke this morning with Capt. Bryant Fuller, commander of the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. Collins is a member of the Senate Homeland Security Committee and serves on the Senate Armed Services Committee.

Sen. Olympia Snowe, R-Maine, said the reaction by the shipyard workers and firefighters and those from surrounding communities, showed their work ethic and teamwork.

“Their preparedness and professionalism ensured that the situation was contained quickly and without significant injury,” said Snowe, who delivered remarks on the Senate floor about the response. “Moving forward, it is vital that the Navy and local authorities undertake a prompt investigation regarding the cause of this incident to make certain it does not happen again.”

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