Fire Erupts Aboard Cruise Ship; No Injuries Reported
All 2,224 passengers aboard a cruise ship operated by Royal Caribbean International will be flown back to the United States from the Bahamas due to a fire which erupted in the mooring area of the vessel at approximately 2:50 in the morning earlier today.
Although it was extinguished at 4:58 this morning as the Grandeur of the Seas was on its way to Coco Cay in the Bahamas, the fire apparently caused enough damage for Royal Caribbean to cancel the remainder of the voyage, according to content posted on facebook:
“We have assessed the damage to Grandeur of the Seas and have made the decision to cancel the remainder of this voyage. We are currently arranging flights for all guests onboard to return to Baltimore, Maryland tomorrow. Guests on this sailing will receive a full refund of the cruise fare as well as a future cruise certificate. Information about upcoming sailings onboard Grandeur of the Seas will be posted as soon as it is available.”
A cruise scheduled for May 31, 2013 has been cancelled as well, with all customers to receive a full refund of the cruise fare — as well as a certificate offering a discount of 50 percent on a future cruise.
No injuries or fatalities were reported in this incident, according to this video report by NBC Nightly News:
Earlier this year, the cruise ship Triumph — operated by Carnival Cruise Lines — was stranded in the Gulf of Mexico southeast of Galveston, Texas and west of the Yucatan Peninsula as the result of an engine room fire that caused the vessel to lose power. Passengers were stranded in unsanitary conditions for days with power outages and cold food until they were finally brought back to Mobile in Alabama.
That incident last February led to the creation of the new Passenger Bill of Rights, implemented recently by the Cruise Lines International Association. The fire aboard the Grandeur of the Seas earlier today was supposedly the first incident to test the Passenger Bill of Rights.
In January of last year, the luxury cruise ship Costa Concordia — which is owned by Costa Cruises, a subsidiary of Carnival Corporation — ran aground off the coast of Italy, resulting in the deaths of at least twelve people and injuring others and spotlighted a number of possible deficiencies, including inadequate safety precautions and the exploits of its now-infamous captain.