SASEMAR/Salvamento Marítimo suspended the search for a passenger who allegedly fell into the water in Port Barcelona (Spain) on Sunday, October 30.
The decision was taken due to the lack of evidence that there was really any person missing at sea, off the coast of Barcelona.
The search had started in the morning when the MSC's ship Bellissima issued a warning at 6:30 that there was a person in the water. The liner made the alert just as it was entering the port of Barcelona through the south entrance.
Although the Civil Guard reported that it was a cruise passenger, the cameras and sensors of MSC Bellissima did not detect anyone falling into the water. On the voyage, they had not found any passengers/crew missing.
For the search, the Barcelona Maritime Rescue service which activated a speedboat and a helicopter, had been mobilized, as well as a boat from the city's Fire Department, a patrol boat from the Civil Guard, and 4 boats from practical staff from the port of Barcelona.
Members of the Red Cross and Fiscal and Borders Company of the port's Civil Guard also worked there. The operation was coordinated by SASEMAR from Madrid.
Civil Protection confirmed that the self-protection plan of Port de Barcelona had been activated in the alert phase due to the search that had been carried out in the estuary area. The accident did not affect the rest of the operations of the infrastructure.
In the search area, the patrol boat of the Provincial Maritime Service of Barcelona's Civil Guard found a life preserver with a light signal that was launched by MSC Bellissima's crew, but not the person who had been being searched for.
The alleged victim was seen at ~7:30 in the morning by a cruise ship crew.
The Civil Guard did not rule out any hypothesis.
At the time of the accident, MSC Bellissima was on a 7-day Mediterranean voyage roundtrip from Genoa (Milan, Italy).
For more MSC Bellissima incidents and accidents see the ship's CruiseMinus page.