A MAN has died and a woman has been injured after an accident on a vessel at a partly-constructed wind farm, 18 miles off Harwich.

It is thought the man was killed when a chain parted and he was struck on the vessel yesterday lunchtime.

Last night an investigation was under way as the vessel, a tug boat, was moored at Parkeston Quay.

Nishan Wijeratne, police spokesman said: “Essex Police is liasing with its Dutch counterparts following an incident in the North Sea in which a man was killed.

“Officers were called shortly after 12.30pm following reports a man had died and a woman was injured following the incident, at the Gabbard Wind farm, approximately 18 miles off the Essex coast.

“A Filipino and Dutch crew were on board a Dutch-registered vessel.

“Essex Police is currently carrying out enquiries into the circumstances surrounding the incident.”

Keith Churchman, Harwich RNLI spokesman, said the people were onboard the tug vessel, Tycoon.

“It is believed a chain parted and that’s what caused the fatality,” he said.

He said the woman had sustained a minor cut to her head and was treated by the vessel’s onboard paramedic.

A spokesperson for Scottish and Southern Energy, which is project managing the construction of the windfarm, said: “Greater Gabbard Offshore Winds Limited (GGOWL) confirms there has been an incident on board a vessel in the North Sea operated by a sub-contractor working on the Greater Gabbard offshore wind farm.”

“GGOWL has begun a full investigation and is co-operating fully with the authorities”

The wind farm is currently under construction and is set to be the world’s largest, when completed by 2012.

It will include up to 140 turbines.