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North Sea collision: Search for missing sailors called off

AFP
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North Sea collision: Search for missing sailors called off
Damage to the hull of the cargo ship "Polesie", pictured early Wednesday morning in Cuxhaven, Lower Saxony. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Jonas Walzberg

German rescue teams called off a search Wednesday for four sailors missing after a cargo ship sank after a collision between two vessels in the North Sea.

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One person has already been declared dead and two people were rescued after the accident, which happened early Tuesday about 22 kilometres southwest of the island of Helgoland.

The search for survivors was called off overnight and will not be resumed Wednesday, said the German Sea Rescue Society (DGzRS).

READ ALSO: One dead and four missing after two ships collide in North Sea

Although ships and helicopters had scoured the zone during the night despite difficult weather conditions, they did not find anything, said the group.

The British-registered Verity, which sank, was carrying a cargo of steel to the English town of Immingham from Bremen, in Germany. It also had 1,300 cubic metres of fuel on board.

Two of the seven crew were rescued, one was found dead and the other four are missing.

The cause of the accident is not known. The Verity, owned by the British company Faversham, with the smaller of the two vessels, with the 190-metre Polesie owned by the Polish company Polsteam sailing under a Bahamas flag.

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It was travelling from Hamburg to La Coruna in Spain when the accident happened. Its 22 crew members were unharmed.

It docked at Cuxhaven, northwest Germany early Wednesday morning, after having taken part in the search for survivors.

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