Twenty-five people aboard the “Swiss Crystal” cruise ship have been injured after the vessel rammed a bridge over the River Rhine in Duisburg, Germany.
The accident occurred on Tuesday evening when the cruise ship hit a bridge support. Normally, the pillar stands on dry land, but it is currently underwater because the Rhine is more than five metres higher than usual.
There were 129 people on board, most of them from the Netherlands. Of the 25 injured, four were hospitalised and another eight later sought treatment. The captain stood under shock, reported the police. Speed was not a factor, but the accident is under investigation.
The bow of the 100-metre-long Swiss Crystal was badly damaged. Built in 1995 and completely renovated in 2007, the cruise ship was at the tail end of a trip starting and ending in Arnhem over Mainz and Koblenz.
Scylla, the Basel-based tour companyexternal link that owns the boat, said on Wednesday it expected long negotiations with the insurance company over damage claims.
Traffic via the bridge was temporarily suspended, meaning a disruption of the A42 motorway route – which handles about 90,000 vehicles per day. However, the bridge was not badly damaged and traffic is flowing freely again.