Polar Bear Shot Dead After Cruise Ship Crew Attacked – On Saturday, July 28, 2018, Hapag Lloyd Cruises ship MS Bremen was calling at Longyearbyen on Spitsbergen Island, in Norway’s Svalbard archipelago. A crew member was leading an expedition of passengers in the arctic circle when he was attacked by a polar bear.
The Joint Rescue Coordination for Northern Norway tweeted that the attack occurred when the tourists from the “MS Bremen” landed on the most northern island of the Svalbard archipelago. The region is known for its remote terrain, glaciers, reindeer and polar bears.
Spokesperson Moritz Krause for Hapag Lloyd Cruises said the polar bear was shot dead “in an act of self-defense.”
Police spokesman Ole Jakob Malmo said two members of the 12-man crew first tried to ward off the bear “by shouting and making loud noises as well as firing a signal pistol, but to no effect.”
The 42-year-old crewmember was taken by helicopter to the town of Longyearbyen on Spitsbergen island. He was in a stable condition.
The polar bear was transported to Longyearbyen for a necropsy.
Spitsbergen is the largest of all three islands in the Norway’s Svalbard Archipelago. Nordaustlandet Island and Edgeoya Island are the other two in the Svalbard Archipelago. The archipelago is located north of the Arctic Circle, about midway between mainland Norway and the Geographic North Pole. Passengers see rugged, remote terrain of glaciers and frozen tundra sheltering polar bears, Svalbard reindeer and Arctic foxes.
The Northern Lights are visible during winter, and summer brings the “midnight sun”—sunlight 24 hours a day.
MS Bremen built in 1990 at Mitsubishi Shipyard, Kobe (Japan), has a capacity of 155 passengers in 80 cabins, with a crew of 100 aboard.
The cruise ship was on an 11-day expedition cruise to the North Pole which embarked from Longyearbyen on Monday, July 23, 2018 with a call at Ny-Alesund before docking at Spitsbergen Island for four days. Bremen was then scheduled to call at Moffen Island before sailing onto Hinlopen Strait. The ship then is scheduled to return to Spitsbergen Island for two days before returning to Longyearbyen on Friday, August 3.
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- Bremen Webcam
Video:POLAR BEAR VOYAGE! Spitsbergen/Svalbard