The engines of a cruise ship failed off Norway’s coast during a storm because they did not have enough lubricating oil, a maritime official has said.
Lars Alvestad, the head of Norway’s Maritime Authority, said on Wednesday that low oil levels were the “direct cause” of the engine failure that stranded the Viking Sky on Saturday.
Mr Alvestad said safety systems detected the problem and automatically stopped the engines to prevent a breakdown.
Viking Sky’s crew sent a mayday call and anchored in heavy seas to keep the ship from being dashed on rocks in an area known for shipwrecks.
Five helicopters lifted 479 passengers off with winches.
The rescue operation ended on Sunday when the engines restarted.
The ship travelled under its own power to a Norwegian port with nearly 900 passengers and crew members onboard.