Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 July 2014

Beached ship leaks fuel off France

The cargo ship TK Bremen was stranded on the beach at Kerminihy near Erdeven, France (AP)
The ship's 19 crew members were evacuated by helicopter after the vessel ran aground (AP)

High winds have beached a cargo ship off France's Atlantic coast and some of the 220 tonnes of fuel in its hold is leaking, threatening a local beach.

Officials in the Morbihan region said the ship's 19-man crew was evacuated by helicopter as the vessel ran aground 100 metres from shore.

The statement said the one-kilometre-long strip of fuel was heading to Erdeven beach in Brittany in north-western France.

Rescuers are pumping the fuel from the cargo hold of the Maltese flagged ship in a bid to empty it.

The French electric company said some 370,000 homes were without electricity as winds of up to 81mph blew across France, triggering alerts in numerous regions.

People were warned to stay indoors.