British boy, 6, fights for life after being found unconscious at bottom of swimming pool during luxury cruise holiday
- Boy was found unconscious in outdoor pool on Independence of the Seas
- He was treated on ship before French Navy helicopter flew him to hospital
- His condition at Morvan Hospital in Brest, France, is described as 'serious'
- Youngster was with his parents on a European luxury cruise at the time
A six-year-old British boy is fighting for his life in hospital after being found unconscious at the bottom of a swimming pool during a luxury cruise holiday.
The young boy was reportedly found at the bottom of one of the main outdoor pools on the Royal Caribbean’s Independence of the Seas cruise liner.
He was travelling with his parents when the incident occurred as the ship passed off the Breton coast, off the north of France, yesterday.
The six-year-old British boy was reportedly found at the bottom of one of the main outdoor pools on the Royal Caribbean's Independence of the Seas cruise liner (pictured)
Emergency services were alerted after the youngster was allegedly found unconscious in the crowded pool shortly after lunchtime. His heart had stopped and he was no longer breathing, it was reported.
Yann Bouvard, a spokesman for the maritime prefecture in the port of Brest, said: ‘The child was found in a state of cardio-respiratory arrest at the bottom of the ship's pool.’
He was pulled from the pool and the cruise liner’s on-board doctor carried out CPR, which was successful in getting his heart beating again.
A French Navy NH90 twin-engine helicopter was scrambled to the scene just before 2pm after the ship’s captain raised the alarm to the Operational Centre for Maritime Surveillance and Rescue in Brittany.
The boy was flown to Morvan Hospital in Brest where his condition was last night described as ‘serious’.
It is not known how the incident occurred but it is thought an investigation will be launched into the circumstances surrounding it.
The youngsters’ parents are said to be by his bedside in hospital after joining him on the flight from the luxury cruise ship to the mainland.
A French Navy NH90 twin-engine helicopter was scrambled to the scene just before 2pm yesterday and took the boy to Morvand Hospital in Brest, France (file picture)
Last night, Mr Bouvard described the incident as ‘incomprehensible’ and told The Times: ‘What is terrible is that children can drown without making any noise at all.
‘We’ve never had a case of a boy drowning in a pool on a ship before, but we have, unfortunately, a lot of experience of that happening in pools on land, and we know that it can happen to anyone, anywhere.’
The Independence of the Seas is a 1,112 ft long vessel belonging to US company Royal Caribbean Cruise Line (RCCL), which sails under the flag of the Bahamas.
According to its website, it is capable of carrying up to 4,375 passengers and 1,360 crew members.
It has three pools, including an adults-only Solarium pool, six whirlpools and a wave machine which it describes as an ‘interactive water park for kids and families filled with geysers, sculpted fountains and waterfalls.’
A seven-night stay on the Freedom-class 15-deck cruise liner for a family of four costs from around £1,600.
The luxury ship is currently on a six-night sail across western Europe, having departed from Southampton on Sunday.