Viking cruise collision kills seven with 21 missing

Viking Sigyn is moored in Budapest after it collided with a smaller sightseeing boat on Wednesday evening, killing at least seven South Korean passengers. Credit: Laszlo Balogh

Around 9pm on Wednesday 29 May, the Viking Cruise owned Viking Sigyn collided with a sightseeing boat The Mermaid resulting in the vessel capsizing.

The incident occurred as the vessels were approaching the Margaret bridge in Budapest on the Danube. The Mermaid was carrying 33 Korean passengers with two Hungarian crew. Emergency services were promptly called out on a rescue mission as the boat sank after capsizing.

At least seven passengers on The Mermaid have been confirmed dead, with another 21 missing, a further seven were rescued by the Hungarian emergency crews.

A search and rescue mission is being conducted to find the remaining passengers, according to Hungarian authorities, however, heavy rains and high water levels have made the mission more difficult, they said.

The authorities also stated at a press conference on Thursday 30 May that the incident will be investigated as a criminal matter.

A Viking Cruises representative said that the company will “cooperate fully with the authorities” during the course of the investigation, and that no Viking crew or guests were injured.

The majority of the missing and dead were part of a week-long tour around Europe, which had started in Munich. The South Korean tour agency, who had organised the trip, Very Good Tours, stated in a press conference that the survivors of the collision were six women and one man aged between 31 and 66.

This incident is the latest in a series to plague the Viking cruise company, with an incident in April where a vessel collided with an oil tanker, and another in March where a cruise ship lost power off the coast of Norway. The March event has since prompted a class action lawsuit against the company.