Expedition Vessel Ran Aground in Spitsbergen

The expedition vessel MS Virgo has ran aground in Fuglefjorden on northwestern Spitsbergen. (Map: Google)

The expedition vessel MS Virgo with 20 persons onboard has ran aground in Fuglefjorden on northwestern Spitsbergen in Svalbard. No one is hurt, however, the ship leaks fuel.

A fuel tank was damaged during the incident and started leaking fuel. Work is ongoing to repair the leak, the Svalbard Governor says to NTB.

The governor’s office was notified of the ship’s running aground around 10 a.m. on Tuesday.

“The extent of damage and amount of fuel leaked out are not clear yet. We are working on repairing the leak and limiting the extent of damage”, Officer Taina Schogster Bjørkås at the Svalbard Governor’s office says.

A task force leader from the Svalbard Governor’s office has boarded the vessel.

There are 13 passengers and a crew of seven onboard the vessel.

The Svalbard Governor says to NRK that on Tuesday it is still too soon to tell why the vessel ran aground.

“We are working on it”, Bjørkås says.

M/S Virgo was built in 1976, to work as a buoy vessel for the Swedish authorities. Since 2021, it has functioned as an expedition ship in the Arctic.

This article was originally published in Norwegian and has been translated by HNN's Elisabeth Bergquist.