Two men have been arrested onboard a Newcastle to Amsterdam ferry after six people were airlifted to hospital following a fire

A 26-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of arson after a fire broke out on board a passenger ferry headed for Amsterdam.

Nearly 1,000 passengers were on board the ship when the fire was started at round 10.40pm on Saturday.

Four passengers and two crew were emergency airlifted to Scarborough hospital as a result, meanwhile, a further 15 passengers and eight crew were treated by doctors on board.

The ship was only 30 miles from shore when the emergency alarm was sounded.

The majority of passengers on board the vessel were Brits heading to the Netherlands to celebrate New Year’s Eve.

A 28-year-old man has also been arrested on suspicion of affray.

Humberside Police’s Andrew Dixon said the Maritime and Coastguard Agency contacted them around 11pm and said that a passenger was “believed to have set fire to a cabin”.

The fire took around 15 minutes to extinguish, after which the ferry returned to Newcastle.

Passenger Steven Basford told The Independent: “We were in our cabin at about 10.40pm when they raised the alarm with seven high-pitched siren noises.

“The fire was on our floor but on the other side of the ship. When we climbed up to the communal area we could see the smoke. It wasn’t thick but it was definitely noticeable.”

DFDS Seaways spokesman Gert Jakobsen said police were speaking to passengers on the ferry and the next ship would leave as scheduled today.

Related news:

Explosion sparks fire on board boat

Motor boat Kahu destroyed by fire in East Cowes