mv luno anglet france shipwreck reuters

6 Feb 2014: The stern of the MV Luno capsized overnight and is pounded by large breaking waves. Image (c) REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

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Update 2: Video shows huge waves break cargo ship in half

Update: Transport Minister says cargo hold was empty.

ANGLET, France, Feb 5 (Reuters) – A Spanish cargo ship broke in two on Wednesday after hitting a sea wall off the southwestern coast of France in high winds and was leaking some fuel into the water, French officials said.

However the government said initial fears that the ship was loaded with fertilizers were unfounded.

“It was an empty freight ship,” Transport Minister Frederic Cuvillier told BFM-TV television.

Two helicopters lifted a dozen crew members to safety, said Jean Espilondo, the mayor of Anglet, a town near the French border with Spain that is close to the scene of the incident.

“Everyone was evacuated. They appear to be safe and sound and will be taken to hospital for checks,” Espilondo told Reuters.

The Luno had suffered engine problems before the incident, Espilondo said. It was not immediately clear what volume of fertiliser it was carrying.

Patrick Dallennes, a local government prefect, said the ship had between 120-160 cubic metres of fuel in its tanks at the time of the incident.

“For the moment the pollution is limited,” he told Reuters. (Reporting by Claude Cannellas; Writing by Brian Love; Editing by Alison Williams and Mark John)

mv luna

Image (c) REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

mv luna

Image (c) REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

mv luna

Image (c) REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

Watch the incredible video of the MV Luna as she breaks in half.

The following images are were taken by Ruben Sardiña Sastre, republished with permission. Follow him on Twitter HERE:

mv luna shipwreck france

mv luna shipwreck france

mv luna shipwreck france

mv luna shipwreck france

(c) 2014 Thomson Reuters, All Rights Reserved

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