- A fire broke out on board a Brittany Ferries cruise ship carrying hundreds of passengers from Plymouth to Santander in Spain.
- The operator has apologized for the disruption and pledged that comprehensive checks will be carried out when the vessel docks.
- Those who were traveling in a vehicle were allowed to cancel their booking with a full refund and to transfer to Plymouth.
According to an article published by Sky News, the ship, which is carrying 766 passengers and 142 staff, will now dock at Brest in northwestern France for safety checks.
A fire broke out on board a Brittany Ferries cruise ship carrying hundreds of passengers from Plymouth to Santander in Spain. Crews working on the Pont-Aven vessel were alerted to the blaze in the engine room at just before 4 am on Monday, forcing it to re-route to the port of Brest in northwest France.
The ship, which is carrying 766 passengers and 142 staff, is not expected to arrive there until 4 pm after a French navy helicopter carrying firefighters had to be dispatched to help contain the flames.
The operator has apologized for the disruption and pledged that “comprehensive checks” will be carried out when the vessel – the largest of its type in the Brittany Ferries fleet at 184m (603ft) in length, with a capacity of 2,400 passengers and 650 cars – docks in France. Once there, checks will be carried out before it is deemed fit to make further journeys.
“Brittany Ferries crews train regularly to deal with incidents at sea, and the company operates a dedicated fire incident training center at its St Malo base in France,” said a spokesman. “The crew immediately put this training into action and brought the fire under control. Brittany Ferries would like to apologize to all passengers affected by this morning’s incident – and for the disruption to their onward journeys.”
Full refund to be provided
Among those on board were British, French, Spanish, Chinese, Polish and US nationals – none were injured. Those who were traveling in a vehicle will be able to cancel their booking with a full refund and to transfer to Plymouth on an 11.30pm service from Roscoff to Plymouth.
If they opt to continue their journey to Spain by road, they will receive a contribution to onward travel costs and compensation for the delayed arrival and inconvenience. Arrangements are also being made to allow passengers traveling on foot to reach their destination.
Brittany Ferries has canceled another three services due to the disruption – the 3.15pm Monday service from Santander to Portsmouth, the 5.15pm Tuesday service from Portsmouth to Santander, and the 9.15pm Wednesday service from Santander to Plymouth.
Affected customers are being contacted so that alternative travel arrangements can be made. Pont-Aven entered the Brittany Ferries fleet in 2004 and serves routes between France and the UK and Ireland, as well as the UK and Spain.
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