Two RNLI lifeboats and a Royal Navy and RAF helicopter were involved in the dramatic rescue of the seven Polish crew members after their vessel got into difficulties as the Welsh coast was battered by Gale Force Nine winds and five metre swells.
Five of the crew were rescued by a Royal Navy Sea King rescue helicopter scrambled from RNAS Prestwick, Scotland. A second helicopter from RAF Leconfield in Yorkshire was scrambled to collect the remaining two crew members.
Crews are currently assessing the damage to the 82-metre long vessel after it hit rocks near Colwyn Bay.
The First Minister, Carwyn Jones said:
“I would like to send my deepest appreciation and thanks to all those who took part in last night’s rescue operation.
“The weather and sea conditions they faced were atrocious. The dedication and professionalism of our emergency services is something we can all be exceptionally proud of.
“The Welsh Government was kept fully informed of developments throughout the night. Our focus now will be to offer any assistance necessary to salvage the ship and to ensure every effort is made to lessen any potential environmental impact.”