Fighter jet sent to rouse drunk Norwegian captain

A drunken Norwegian freighter captain steering his 70-metre-long vessel on autopilot had to be awoken from semi-consciousness by a Danish F-16 fighter-bomber after a helicopter sent from Denmark failed to get him to alter course.

The Danish coastguard, or Sjøvaernet, then urged police to board the vessel and steer it off a course the Norwegian captain had failed to alter for six hours. The long straight line on their radar screens tipped the Danes off that something was amiss.

The ship, the MS Ranfafjord i Kattegat had to be “buzzed” by the jet because its snoozing captain’s blood-alcohol level was over 20-times the legal limit. He was arrested on the bridge for suspicion of sailing while under the influence.

“He tried to blame the navigator, but the log book showed the navigator had gone off watch and the captain had taken over,” Nord-Jylland policeman Per Holst told newspaper Nord-Jyske.

The ship was piloted for the crew to Aalborg in Denmark.

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