A body has been found as rescuers search for six crew members of a cargo vessel which sank in heavy storms in the Irish Sea on Sunday morning.

The Waterford-based Irish coastguard helicopter has recovered a body but five other crew members are still unaccounted for.

The Swanland cargo ship was 20 miles off Wales when it issued a distress call at 2 a.m. on Sunday morning as gale force winds battered the vessel.

Two crew members were rescued in the initial operation after the hull cracked on the cargo vessel, transporting limestone.

Two lifeboat crews, four search and rescue helicopters and a number of commercial boats are assisting in the search for the remaining five sailors.



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A spokeswoman for the Holyhead Coastguard unit in North Wales said: “We had a mayday call at just after 2am this morning and it was for a cargo ship with eight people onboard.

“It had a cracked hull so some other vessels went to the scene and they provided shelter for the people that were in the water.

“Two helicopters and two life boats were sent to the scene. Two people were recovered from the water.

“I haven’t got much information on their condition but I have heard that they are okay.”

Jim Green from the Holyhead Coastguard added: “We are very concerned for the safety of the other crew members. We know that at least some of them are wearing immersion suits and have strobe lighting with them, however sea conditions are challenging at best.”