Mother and Son Dead After Plunging from Baltic Sea Ferry
A Polish woman and her 7-year-old son have died after plunging from a Baltic Sea ferry travelling from Sweden to Poland, a Polish police spokesman said on Friday.
Swedish authorities said on Thursday the child had fallen off the vessel and that the mother proceeded to jump overboard in an attempted rescue. The two were later winched to a helicopter and taken to a Swedish hospital.
"Unfortunately, in the morning we received information from the Swedish side that we have to pass on this terrible news to the family, because both the boy and the woman are dead," police spokesman Mariusz Ciarka.
Swedish police could not confirm that the mother and child had died. The hospital declined to comment, referring inquiries to the police.
The Swedish ferry, Stena Spirit, was in the Baltic midway through its journey to Gdynia in Poland from Karlskrona in Sweden when the incident occurred, rescue officials said on Thursday.
What brought about the incident remains unknown.
"At the moment we have no information whether this was due to a malfunction of the ferry," Stena Line spokesperson Agnieszka Zembrzycka told TVN 24. "We are cooperating with the police and other authorities that are appointed to explain the causes and circumstances of this event."
Swedish police issued an appeal to Polish passengers via Poland's state-run news agency PAP asking for information that could explain how the accident occurred.
(Reuters - Reporting by Terje Solsvik, Alan Charlish and Anna Ringstrom in Stockholm; editing by Mark Heinrich)