A new hitch has halted attempts to lift two passenger ferries onto the deck of a large cargo ship in Galway Docks this afternoon.

The ferries were to be transported form Galway to the Indian Ocean island of Mauritius.

Two previous attempts were unsuccessful and this afternoon the latest attempt was halted.

Galway Harbour Master Captain Brian Sheridan said fresh concerns had emerged over the ability of the crane on board the Thor Gitta to lift the ferries onto its deck.

The operation, which got under way at 7am, has been suspended for the day.

The admiralty order arresting the Thor Gitta was lifted this afternoon.

The first freighter which was sent to carry out the operation ran aground on the rocks at Rossaveal during a storm.

A week later, three men were injured in an accident in Galway Harbour when a sling broke as one of the ferries was being loaded onto a second cargo ship.