Monday 5 December 2016

Five Britons die as Canadian whale-watching boat sinks

Jeremy Hainsworth in Vancouver

Published 27/10/2015 | 02:30

The MV Leviathan ll sinking off Vancouver Island Photo: Albert Titian
The MV Leviathan ll sinking off Vancouver Island Photo: Albert Titian

Five British nationals died when a whale-watching boat with 27 people on board sank off Vancouver Island.

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One person was missing and the rest were rescued, some by members of the local aboriginal community who rushed to the scene.

The vessel made a mayday call late Sunday afternoon on a calm, clear and sunny day off the tourist community of Tofino, a popular destination for whale watchers. The cause of the sinking remained a mystery.

British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond confirmed that the five killed were UK nationals. "My thoughts are with the family and friends of all those affected by this terrible accident," Mr Hammond said.

A search by the rescue agency staffed by Canadian military and Coast Guard personnel concluded late on Sunday, with 21 rescued and one person missing. The Royal Canadian Mounted Police will take over the search for the missing person. The boat, the 20-metre Leviathan II, was partially submerged 12 nautical kilometres west of Tofino.

Irish Independent

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