After being investigated for hitting rocks last month off Snares Island, Ponant’s L’Austral is once again under investigation after hitting an ‘underwater object’ in Milford Sound on Thursday.
Whilst it appears there has been very little damage caused to the ship’s hull, investigators from New Zealand’s Transport Accident Investigation Commision will still undertake an investigation as ‘standard procedure’ and were scheduled to embark the vessel in Dunedin today.
Speaking to the New Zealand Herald about the incident, the ships owners, Michael Corbett, Ponant’s Australian PR Manager said:
“It was entering the Milford Sounds under the directions of the pilot on board when it brushed an underwater object (presumably a rock). There is slight hull deformation but no breach of the hull, so no water is coming into the ship.”
The 10,944grt, 466ft long ‘mega-yacht’ can accomodate over 260 passengers in 132 cabins on board and entered service for Ponant in 2011. She is also classified as 1C in the ice classifications and operates under the French flag.
Quote: New Zealand Herald
Feature Image: Ponant.