A MAN has died after failing overboard from a ferry travelling from Belfast to Cairnryan in Scotland.
The incident occurred at around 5.50pm on Saturday as Stena Line's Superfast VIII vessel approached its destination.
The passenger was recovered from the water by the ferry's rescue boat before being airlifted by HM coastguard helicopter to hospital, where he was sadly pronounced dead.
Police Scotland revealed they were investigating the incident relating to the 15.30 sailing from Belfast but added that there were no suspicious circumstances.
"We received a report of a man having gone overboard from a ferry at Belfast Way, Cairnryan around 5.50pm on Saturday, July 1, 2023," said a spokesperson.
"Emergency services attended and the man was taken to University Hospital Ayr, where he was pronounced dead.
"Enquiries to establish the full circumstances of the incident remain ongoing, however there are not thought to be any suspicious circumstances.
"A report will be submitted to the Procurator Fiscal."
RNLI lifeboats were launched from Stranraer and Girvan to assist with the operation at the request of HM Coastguard, as were Coastguard crews from Stranraer, Portpatrick and Ballantrae.
A statement for Britain's maritime emergency service confirmed a Coastguard helicopter had taken the man to hospital.
"HM Coastguard was requested to assist the Stena Superfast VIII ferry this evening after a person fell overboard in Loch Ryan," said a spokesperson.
"The person was recovered from the water by the ferry's fast rescue craft and taken to Ayr Hospital by the Coastguard helicopter."
In a statement to The Irish Post, Stena Line confirmed an emergency response procedure was initiated as they vessel approached its destination.
"We can confirm that a 'man overboard' incident involving a passenger occurred at approx. 18.00 hrs (July 1) on the Stena Superfast VIII vessel as the ship approached its destination of Loch Ryan Port, Cairnryan," said a spokesperson.
"Emergency response procedures were initiated, including the launch of Stena Line's onboard fast response craft.
"All relevant authorities, including the Coastguard and Police Scotland were informed and a search and rescue operation was launched.
"Superfast VIII resumed its sailing schedule at approx. 20.30 hrs.
"A full investigation into the incident is currently underway led by Police Scotland."