Page last updated at 11:40 GMT, Tuesday, 11 May 2010 12:40 UK

Cruise ship impounded in Portsmouth for hours

Portsmouth Harbour
The vessel was delayed at Portsmouth Harbour for four hours

A cruise ship was impounded for several hours in Portsmouth amid safety fears.

The Prince Albert II, operated by Silversea Cruises, was held at the Hampshire port on Monday after inspectors found it was overloaded.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency said it was also concerned that senior officers had not had enough rest.

V.Ships, which manages the vessel, said although officers had rested, records had been incorrectly recorded. The excess load was also removed.

We do take these things very seriously and we will be looking at how we prevent something like this from happening again
V.Ships spokesman

The vessel, which had 120 passengers on board, left for Scotland shortly after 0000 BST on Tuesday, four hours later than it was scheduled to leave.

A spokesman for V.Ships said: "The vessel had just stopped in Portsmouth to take on fresh supplies but was found to be over her load line so some of those supplies were removed.

"The other issue was the record of working hours - and it appears that those were mistakenly recorded.

"We do take these things very seriously and we will be looking at how we prevent something like this from happening again."

Richard Pellew of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency inspections team said: "The safety aspect of the ship and those who are on board is always our primary concern."



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