AROUND 100 guests have been injured on the Spirit of Discovery after the cruise ship was caught in a storm in the Bay of Biscay.
The Saga Cruises ship had to return to the UK after the bad weather triggered its safety system – making it suddenly veer to the left and halt.
The terrifying experience unfolded when stormy weather hit the Saga ship in the Bay of Biscay off the French coast on Saturday.
It has now returned to Britain – after cancelling the cruise early – with some passengers going straight to hospital.
Spirit of Discovery was on a 14-night Canary Island Quintet cruise, which departed on 24 October.
However, after 10 days of smooth sailing, the crew decided to cancel its final call to Las Palmas and continue to La Coruna in northern Spain to get ahead of the approaching storm.
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On its way to La Coruna it emerged the port was closed, so the ship headed to the UK earlier than planned.
While in the Bay of Biscay, which can have choppy waters, the ship's propulsion safety system activated at 12.30pm and turned the ship.
Saga said that around 100 of the 1,000 guests on board were injured by the bump.
Five guests were treated for more serious injuries by medics on board.
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Passengers then spent around 18 hours waiting for the storm and gales to pass after a decision was taken by the Master to hold the position in the Bay of Biscay.
The ship docked in Portsmouth yesterday, with a handful of the injured passengers due to go to hospital.
Were you on board? Email Harry Goodwin: [email protected]
A letter from Saga Cruises CEO Nigel Blanks to customers said: "I appreciate it was an extremely frightening time but I wanted to reassure you that the ship remained safe."
He added that they would receive details about compensation in coming days following the "disappointing end to your cruise".
Saga Cruises said: "Spirit of Discovery was sadly caught in the challenging weather conditions this weekend, as she started her return to the UK.
"The ship remained safe at all times, but due to the impact of the storm some guests sustained injuries.
"All were treated immediately by onboard medical staff. While the weather is clearly beyond our control, we want to offer our sincere apologies to all those affected who are now safely back, having sailed home in calmer seas."
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