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1,300 people being evacuated from cruise ship off coast of Norway due to engine problems

Police reported the passengers would be evacuated by helicopter.

Updated Mar 23rd 2019, 4:25 PM

Norway Cruise ship Viking Sky drifting towards land Source: Odd Roar Lange via PA Images

AROUND 1,300 PEOPLE are being airlifted from a cruise ship off the coast of Norway, according to emergency services. 

Police in the county of More og Romsdal received a report shortly after 2pm that a cruise ship, which has been identified as the Viking Sky, was experiencing engine problems. 

The ship sent an SOS message due to “engine problems in bad weather”, southern Norway’s rescue centre said on Twitter.

“The boat only has one working engine and the winds are rather strong. Therefore we would prefer to have the passengers on land rather than on board the ship,” a police chief said.

“It is dangerous to encounter engine problems in these waters which hide numerous reefs.”

By 4.30pm (2.30pm Irish time), 100 people had been evacuated, with four helicopters involved in the airlift. A reception centre has been set up on shore to accommodate the evacuees. 

Other boats have also been seen in the area.

Includes reporting by © AFP 2019 

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