Oban Bay cruise liner refloated

23 May 2013 09:26

Police patrol Oban bay near the Corrin Hall conference centre at the start of the three day Scottish Labour party conference Oban.

Police patrol Oban bay near the Corrin Hall conference centre at the start of the three day Scottish Labour party conference Oban.

A small cruise liner which become stuck on sand and gravel off the coast of Oban Bay on the west coast of Scotland has been refloated. The MS Serenissima, registered in the Caribbean island chain of the Grenadines, ran aground at about 6.30pm on Monday evening with 112 passengers on board, while making the journey from Ireland to Oban.

The initial attempt to free the ship failed due to high winds, but it was eventually refloated at around 1.10am on Tuesday morning. There were no reports of injuries and no signs of pollution or damage to the ship, Stornoway Coastguard said, but the incident highlights the importance of passengers taking out cruise travel insurance to cover them in the event of an accident or delay.

The liner was kept anchored in Oban Bay while divers carried out underwater surveys of the 85m vessel to confirm its seaworthiness. "The initial attempt at refloating the ship used its own engine with the lifeboat providing assistance by pulling at the stern," an Oban Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) spokesman said. "Unfortunately this attempt was hampered by a strong wind blowing the ship towards the shore, and was unsuccessful."

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