British cargo ship sinks after collision in the North Sea with one man found dead in sea, as search continues

24 October 2023, 08:46 | Updated: 24 October 2023, 12:17

Verity. Picture: Vessel Finder

By Kit Heren

A British cargo ship has sunk after a collision with another ship in the North Sea, with one crew member found dead in the sea as the search for others continues.

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Verity, a 91-metre British-flagged ship, collided with Polesie in the early hours of Tuesday morning, about 14 miles south-west of the island of Heligoland, according to German authorities.

Rescue workers found the body of a man in the sea after the collision. Two people have been rescued from the water and are being given medical treatment.

Rescuers are searching for four other missing people in the sea. A P&O cruise ship is among the vessels looking for the missing people.

German authorities said Verity, which was built in 2001, was travelling from Bremen, a north German city, to Immingham in Lincolnshire.

Read more: Passengers injured as UK cruise ship crashes into freight vessel due to high winds in Mallorca

Read more: 'I could see fish swimming outside window': Brit tourist tells of battle to escape capsizing yacht on Egypt holiday

Polesie is a much larger ship
Polesie is a much larger ship. Picture: Vessel Finder

Polesie, which is Bahamas-flagged, remained afloat and has 22 people on board.

The ship, which at 190 metres is more than double the size of Verity, was travelling from Hamburg in Germany to A Coruña in Spain. Polesie is also newer by eight years than the British-flagged ship.

A P&O Cruises spokesperson said: "P&O Cruises Iona is currently involved in a search and rescue operation off the coast of Germany. 

"The incident is ongoing and Iona's cooperation complies with international maritime law as well as being consistent with the company's moral and legal obligations. 

"Iona is scheduled to be at sea today and this event should have no impact upon tomorrow's scheduled call to Rotterdam or the onward itinerary."


Heligoland is east of Denmark and north of Germany.

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