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ACCIDENT

Swede dies in Portugal base jump freefall

A 29-year-old Swedish man has died after his parachute failed to open during a 100 metre base jump in Nazaré in Portugal.

Swede dies in Portugal base jump freefall

“We don’t know what happened, but the parachute didn’t open,” said Lourenço Gorricha at Nazaré police to the Expressen daily.

Gorricha told the newspaper that the 29-year-old Swede had jumped from around 100 metres and landed on the rocks below.

“He showed no signs of life when we got to him,” Gorricha said.

The Swede travelled to Portugal together with some Norwegian friends to pursue his passion for base jumping – an activity where participants leap from fixed objects such as buildings and bridges using parachutes to break their fall.

The tragic accident was witnessed by his travel companions and they were given help from psychologists after their friend’s fall.

Nazaré in central Portugal is a popular spot for base jumping although according to Lourenço Gorricha this is the first time there has been a death in the sport.

The Swede is reported to have been a very experienced base jumper with over 300 jumps as a member of the Norwegian Tönsberg parachute club.

“He was a very positive human being, a fantastic person,” said club chairman Jon Martin Engebretsen to Expressen.

The 29-year-old’s family has been informed about the accident.

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ACCIDENT

Grounded Finland ferry refloated and heading back to port

UPDATE: A ferry that ran aground next to islands between Finland and Sweden with nearly 430 crew and passengers on board, was refloated and heading for port, its owners said Sunday.

Grounded Finland ferry refloated and heading back to port
The Viking Line ship Grace hit rocks in in the Aland archipelago. Photo AFP

The Viking Line's “Grace” hit rocks on Saturday afternoon while sailing between the Finnish port of Turku and the Swedish capital Stockholm, shortly before a stopover in Mariehamn, in the Aland archipelago, Finland's coast guard said.

The passengers had to spend the night on board, though there was no immediate danger as it was not taking on water. No one was hurt in the incident.

A tug boat helped refloat the ferry in the small hours of Sunday morning, the coast guard said on Twitter.

After disembarking around 260 passengers at Mariehamn, it went on to its home port of Turku in Finland, a Viking Line spokeswoman told AFP Sunday. It would undergo repairs in the coming days, she added.

Although the cause of the accident has yet to be established, the coast guard said there were strong winds in the area at the time.

The company cancelled its Saturday ferry service, which was to have been taken by a smaller vessel, because of a storm warning.

In September, another Viking Line ferry, the Amorella, ran aground on the same Aaland Island and the passengers had to be evacuated.

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