VENLO, Netherlands (AP) _ Two German women drowned when the yacht they were on collided with a Dutch barge on the Meuse River and sank, police said Saturday.

The accident occurred Friday evening when one of the women's husbands suddenly steered to port after noticing the mast would not clear a bridge, police spokesman Jac van Bennekom said.

He said the yacht, on its maiden voyage, crashed into the freight vessel, which was emerging from under the bridge.

Rescuers later found Christel Kehrmann, 49, and Helga Deters, 50, both of Essen, Germany, dead in the cabin, Van Bennekom said. Their husbands, who had been on deck at the time of the collision, dove off and survived without injury.