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Atkins mourns loss of staff in Bahrain boat disaster - image

Atkins is mourning the loss of six staff drowned in last Thursday's Bahrain party boat tragedy.

A further three partners, friends or relatives are confirmed dead and one person remains missing, presumed dead.

The Epsom-based architectural and engineering giant has named nearly all victims. These are Scott Belch and his wife Sandy; Jason Brett and wife Lucinda Lamb; Andrew Debrunner, Carl Ottewell and Christopher Langan.

Crisis support centres, set up by Atkins immediately after the disaster, are to remain open this week.

The company's Bahrain operation is located in Manama and employs around 100 people.

Atkins' CEO Keith Clarke and regional managing director Tim Askew are now in Bahrain supporting staff and relatives of victims.

Keith Clarke said: 'Our priority at this moment remains to ensure that all those in any way connected to the tragedy receive all the help we can give them, whether in terms of immediate support, professional counselling, transportation, help with their respective embassies or liaising with the relevant authorities.'

Anger was growing among survivors after it was revealed the Al Dana pleasure cruiser was licensed as a floating restaurant and should not have been taken to sea.

The owners insist a tour company is to blame for allowing too many passengers on board the vessel.

by Clive Walker

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