Search for 'cruise-fall' Briton

 


A search was under way today for a British passenger who apparently went overboard from the world's biggest cruise ship in waters near Mexico.

The 30-year-old man was seen falling over the railings by another passenger on the Allure of the Seas, the Royal Caribbean International cruise line said.

He could also be seen falling over in footage from an onboard video camera.

The man went overboard as the ship was sailing to Cozumel, Mexico and the Mexican navy and coastguard are assisting in the search.

The Allure of the Seas left Fort Lauderdale in Florida on Sunday for a seven-night cruise. The ship can carry 5,400 passengers.

The man's name has not been released.

A spokeswoman for the Foreign Office said: "We are aware of the reports and are looking into them."

The guest saw the man fall overboard at 12.10pm (7.10am local time) yesterday, a statement from Royal Caribbean said.

The company added: "The ship made multiple public announcements and began a complete search of the ship, in efforts to locate the guest.

"When the guest did not respond to the pages and was not found onboard, the captain alerted the local authorities of the situation.

"A review of the ship's closed-circuit camera footage observed the 30-year-old British male guest going over the balcony railing in his stateroom on deck 11.

"The location of the ship at the time the guest went overboard was marked on the ship's Global Positioning System (GPS) and the US and Mexican coastguard were alerted.

"Allure of the Seas, along with Mexican coastguard, Mexican navy and the pilot boat, conducted a search for the missing guest."

The coastguard released the ship at around 2.30pm (9.30am local time) and it continued on to Cozumel, where it arrived an hour later.

"Our care team is providing support to the guest's family and our thoughts and prayers are with them," the statement said.

"Allure of the Seas is currently sailing a seven-night Caribbean itinerary that departed Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on January 29, with port calls to Labadee, Haiti; Costa Maya and Cozumel, Mexico."

A spokeswoman for Royal Caribbean International said the ship had been fully chartered by Atlantis Events, whose website says it is "the largest company in the world dedicated to creating unique vacations for the gay and lesbian community".

The Allure of the Seas boasts a park with more than 12,000 live plants, a zipline, a theatre, a casino and a nightclub.

PA

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