Ferry fire rescue

A man has been charged with arson after a fire on board a ferry in the North Sea.

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Man appears in court charged with ferry arson

King Seaways ferry. Credit: ITV Tyne Tees

A man charged with arson after a ferry bound for Amsterdam caught fire allegedly caused £815,000 worth of damage to the vessel. 26-year-old Boden George Hughes is accused of setting fire to a cabin while onboard the DFDS boat King Seaways during the weekend.

The ferry, travelling from Newcastle to Holland, never reached its destination and was forced to turn around after the blaze on Saturday night (December 28).

At North Tyneside Magistrates Court Hughes, of Fulwell Road, Sunderland was charged with committing arson with intent in that he had 'damaged by fire cabin 568 of the King Seaways DFDS ferry to the value of approximately £815,000.'

The charge also stated that Hughes allegedly intended 'to destroy property or damage by recklessness as to whether such property would be destroyed or damaged and intending by the damage to endanger the life of another.'

Hughes, who wore a grey sweatshirt and was sporting a black eye in the dock, spoke only to confirm his age, date of birth and address. He is also charged with affray in that he threatened 'unlawful violence towards another.'

There was no application for bail and Hughes was remanded in custody.

Hughes will next appear at Newcastle Crown Court on January 14.


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Stranded ferry passengers transferred to Hull

Passengers stranded after a fire on board a ferry from North Shields to the Netherlands are being transferred to Hull to catch another ferry.

Around 250 passengers will travel from Hull to Rotterdam this evening on a P&O ferry.

Another 9 are travelling to Zeebrugge in Belgium.

There were 946 passengers and 127 crew on board the DFDS Seaways ferry when a fire was discovered in a cabin on Saturday evening.

Two men are still being questioned by police.

DFDS is paying for the alternative transport on P&O ferries.


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DFDS apologises to customers

A DFDS spokesperson has apologised to customers who have been affected by a ferry fire.

"We are very sorry for those passengers who have not only been affected by the fire but now by these delays. We are looking at how we can help them.

"The cabin that was burnt is very damaged and there has been some smoke damage to surrounding cabins but the ship's function has not been affected in any way and is safe to travel."

– Gert Jakobsen, DFDS Seaways
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