MADRID - Five crew members died in an emergency drill on a cruise ship in the Canary Islands on Sunday, police said.
Cables snapped on a lifeboat and it plunged 20 metres (65 feet) to the ocean and fell upside down, killing the five and injuring three others aboard, during the mock rescue exercise on the Thomson Majesty, operated by British travel group TUI Travel. It was in the port of La Palma.
TUI, Europe's largest tour operator, did not respond immediately to telephone calls or email requests for comment.
According to Spanish reports those killed were believed to be three Indonesians, a Filipino and a Ghanaian. Two Greek nationals on the lifeboat were seriously injured, with another Filipino slightly hurt.
It is believed the boat dropped between 20 and 30 metres into the water before overturning. It was not known what caused the boat to fall.
According to the report about 2,000 passengers were on board the Majesty at the time, though none were involved in the drill. The ship is based in the port and usually operates cruises around the Canaries and Madeira.