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ARGENTINA | 01-12-2022 19:04

'Rogue wave' kills person on Antarctic cruise

One person died and four were injured when a giant wave broke several glass panels of an Antarctic cruise ship that was sailing south of Cape Horn in the middle of a storm.

One person died and four were injured when a giant wave broke several glass panels of an Antarctic cruise ship that was sailing south of Cape Horn, in the middle of a storm, sources from a Norwegian company and Argentine courts reported on Thursday.

The accident occurred last Tuesday at 10:40 p.m. local time (01:40 a.m. GMT on Wednesday, November 30) when the Norwegian-flagged cruise ship "Viking Polaris" was hit by a large wave, which caused several glass panels to break in the booths.

The ship faced a giant wave while sailing towards Ushuaia, 3,200 km south of Buenos Aires, a Viking company source in Norway said.

"It is with great sadness that we confirm that a passenger passed away after the incident. We have notified the guest's family and shared our deepest condolences," the source said, without specifying the gender of the victim.

Four other tourists suffered injuries but without their lives being in danger. They were treated by on-board medical personnel, the company said.

The "Viking Polaris" suffered minor damage in the accident and returned Wednesday afternoon to the port of Ushuaia, where it is moored, AFP confirmed.

In response to inquiries from AFP, the Argentine Naval Prefecture (naval police) did not provide information. The investigation was settled in the criminal secretary number 2 of the federal court in the capital of the province of Tierra del Fuego, said a judicial source without providing more information about the cause.

The company said it is investigating the facts and working with the passengers and crew to organise their return trips.

The "Viking Polaris", which has other cruises planned for this season, was launched in 2022 and is the newest from the Norwegian company. Its capacity is 378 passengers and the crew of 256 people, according to the firm's website.

Two weeks ago two other tourists died while crossing Antarctica on the cruise ship "Word Explorer" when the semi-rigid boat they were taking on an excursion capsized offshore and they fell overboard in a case that is still under investigation.

The deceased were two men of American nationality aged 76 and 80, according to the naval police.

--AFP/TIMES

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