Powerless cruise ship towed home

Passengers trapped on a stricken cruise ship finally disembarked after a nightmare few days without power or hot running water

More than 3,000 passengers breathed huge sighs of relief when their stricken cruise ship was towed into port yesterday (Thursday 11 November), three days after losing all power as a result of an engine fire. Although Carnival Splendor‘s crew managed to put the fire out, the 113,000-ton ship was left wallowing about 50 miles off the coast of Mexico.

The fire knocked out the ship’s hot and cold water, air conditioning, refrigeration, toilets, and telephones, although cold water and toilets were later restored using auxiliary power. Tugs were called to take Carnival Splendor in tow, while helicopters from the US aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan (pictured above) delivered more than two tons of food and other supplies to the ship.

Carnival Splendor, with its 3,299 passengers and 1,167 crew, was escorted by the US Coast Guard as it was towed into San Diego harbour. Carnival Cruise Lines, the ship’s operator, has promised passengers a full refund along with reimbursement for transportation costs and a complimentary future cruise.

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