Coast Guard searching for passenger who fell from cruise ship

The 35-year-old Brazilian fell from a cruise ship early on Friday as it sailed through the night in waters off the Bahamas.YOUTUBE
The Oasis of the Seas in a video screenshot.
The Oasis of the Seas in a video screenshot.YOUTUBE

MIAMI (REUTERS) - US Coast Guard search-and-rescue crews were searching on Friday for a 35-year-old Brazilian man who fell from a cruise ship at night in the Bahamas, officials said.

The Royal Caribbean Cruises ship Oasis of the Seas reported the man missing at about 1am on Friday (2pm Singapore time), the Coast Guard said in a news release.

“He was spotted by... crew members intentionally going over the side of the ship,” the cruise line said in a statement.

A video posted on YouTube appears to show passengers on the ship calling to a man in shorts who is holding on to a life boat support bracket as the ship is moving at a swift pace through the sea at night. “Because of you, this happened ... Let go of me! Get off of me!” he shouts in English.

The man seems to lose his grip and falls into the ocean and disappears from view (below).

The Coast Guard said it was searching about 145km north-east of Mayaguana, in the Bahamas. Royal Caribbean said the man fell overboard about 112km east of the Turks and Caicos Islands.

Two small boats were launched to search for the man who was last seen wearing a pink shirt and white shorts, according to the Coast Guard.

A long-range Coast Guard helicopter was despatched from Florida to search for the man as well as a Hercules HC-130 search and rescue plane, the Coast Guard said.

The Oasis of the Seas, which can carry more than 5,000 passengers, is on a weeklong cruise in the eastern Caribbean and is currently based in Port Everglades, in South Florida.