Cork County Council firefighters in East Cork battled a fire which broke out on board the shipwreck, the MV Alta.

There were no reports of anyone on board the ghost ship which has attracted thousands of sightseers since it first washed up along the southern coastline last year.

It is understood that the fire was burning in cabins at the bow of the vessel.

Firefighters finished earlier this evening due to rising tide and poor light. Cork County Council says that the fire has been "substantially extinguished" and will be assessed tomorrow.

Potentially hazardous materials and engine oils were removed from the 45-year-old ship during a major environmental protection operation.

Fire tenders from Midleton and Youghal were dispatched to the abandoned vessel near Ballycotton shortly before 4pm this afternoon.

The Irish Coast Guard were also alerted and the local Ballycotton Coast Guard also attended the scene.

The ship washed up off the south coast of Ireland near Ballycotton in February of last year, having been abandoned by its owners and crew in October 2018.

Located in an isolated area with difficult access, the ship has remained a magnet for sightseers.

An appeal has been made for members of the public to avoid the area and not to access the shipwreck which is in an unsafe condition.

Cork County Council says that gardaí will continue to monitor the situation overnight.

(Pic: Cork County Council)