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Last Updated: Tuesday September 14 2010 13:10 GMT

Gadget to stop ships hitting whales

whale

Gadget to stop ships hitting whales

A new system has been developed to try to stop big cruise ships crashing into whales.

Researchers say the number of fin whales being hit by ships in the Mediterranean has doubled in 30 years.

The whales come to the warm waters between France and Italy to feed, but sometimes they are accidentally hit by passing cruise ships.

The new system will let ships tell each other when they spot a whale, so that other ships nearby can avoid it.

Once a ship sees a whale they enter its location into a special computer.

Warning

This is then sent by satellite to a central hub, which sends the information out to other ships in the area.

The World Wildlife Fund says around one in five whales found dead in the Mediterranean have been hit by a ship

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Fin whales are the second largest animal on earth, after the blue whale.