The incident took place around 1pm, said Pol Col Wallop Puangphaka, the chief of Marine Police Sub-division 6. He did not give details on the ship and the number of passengers on board but other reports said the vessel was the R8, one of 14 ships operated by SET-listed Raja Ferry Port Plc.
The fire began in the engine room about 30 minutes after the craft left the resort island for Don Sak pier in Don Sak district of Surat Thani. The ship idled in the water until a Marine Police boat came to conduct a rescue.
Three crew members were slightly injured by smoke inhalation and were taken to Samui Hospital. The passengers were taken to the mainland, according to the police.