Wreck of Condor crash boat revealed
The wreck of a fishing boat belonging to a French fisherman who was killed in a collision with a Condor ferry has been raised from the seabed off the Minquiers.
Father-of-four Philippe Lesaulnier, 42, was killed in the crash with the Condor Vitesse in March and pronounced dead in Jersey General Hospital, while two other crew members survived by clinging to the wreckage.
As the mangled metal of the Marquises was craned ashore, the full extent of the damage caused during the accident in thick fog became apparent.
The wreck was then towed to the port of St Malo.
The bow section of the vessel was completely separated from the rest of the hull and the wheelhouse - where Monsieur Lesaulnier was standing when the Condor struck - and was almost completely destroyed.
On the quay as the Marquises was craned ashore the owner of the trawler Pascal Le Guilloux told journalists that he had preferred that the boat be brought to St Malo rather than its home port in Granville.
He said: "It would have upset the boys in Granville to see her in this state."
The wreck will be investigated by French police. It took 13 hours to tow the Marquises to St Malo and a further two hours to crane the remains of the boat shore.
The decision to recover the wreck was taken shortly after an investigation into manslaughter was begun by a prosecutor in Coutances.
Last month, Renaud Gaudeul said that inquiries are continuing and a decision on eventual charges will be taken in September after the wreckage of the Marquises has been scrutinised by marine experts to determine the exact
circumstances of the accident.
Investigators have already been studying data in the Condor Vitesse’s black box.