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Drunken captain runs Dutch ship aground in Rostock, blocking port entrance

A large Dutch vessel has been towed free after running aground and blocking the entrance to the German port of Rostock. The ship's captain reportedly caused the accident while under the influence of alcohol.

The captain veered off course immediately after leaving port, damaging the 85-meter (279 feet) "Abis Berger," officials in the northern German city of Rostock said on Sunday.

While investigating the incident, the harbor police noted a strong smell of alcohol on the skipper and administered a breathalyzer test, which showed an alcohol level of 1.48 milliliters, well above the legal limit.

The boat ran aground in the port entrance area and blocked off access for other ships before it was towed away by a tug, the harbor patrol said in a statement.

The ship's commander is now facing charges for "endangering naval traffic" and piloting the ship despite being "absolutely unfit for duty."

dj/jm (dpa, AFP)

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