Viking Sigyn Captain Testifies 4 Years After Boat Catastrophe on Danube Near Margaret Bridge in Budapest
- 6 Sep 2023 6:35 AM
- Hungary Around the Clock
Yuri Chaplinsky, a Ukrainian, was captain of the Viking Sigyn hotel ship when it rammed the much smaller sightseeing boat Hableány on the night of May 29, 2019 near the Margit Bridge. He is accused of negligence and of failing to provide help.
Chaplinsky denies guilt and has not made a statement but on Tuesday he submitted a written statement to the court.
He said he did not see the Hableány in the rainy and dark conditions and thought his vessel had hit driftwood.
When informed that his ship had sunk a small boat, he was shocked and he asked to be relieved of command, at which point the second officer took command.
Chaplinsky did not acknowledge responsibility for the accident in his statement.
The prosecutor said the accident could have been prevented had anyone looked at the radar screen, and that shock and panic are no excuse for the captain’s failure to provide assistance.
Chaplinsky has been under house arrest for three years. He will be sentenced to at least ten years in prison if the court finds him guilty on September 26.
Only one in four days under house arrest counts as time served in prison.
MTI Photo: Csilla Cseke