Carnival Cruise Lines Spending $700M for Improvements After Triumph Debacle

Image: Carnival Cruise Lines Spending $700M for Improvements After Triumph Debacle Carnival Triumph in port at Cozumel, Mexico, January 2013.

Wednesday, 17 Apr 2013 02:41 PM

By Alexandra Ward

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Carnival Cruise Lines announced Wednesday its plans to spend $700 million to repair and upgrade its entire fleet of vessels to prevent an incident like the one that crippled its Triumph ship for several days in February.
Adding $300 million to its previously announced repair plans, Carnival will now spend between $600 and $700 million to expand upgrades to its entire fleet. The maintenance will be aimed at improving safety standards and creating backup power systems incase of failure.

"Although every ship in our fleet currently has emergency back-up power which is designed to enable the continuous operation of safety equipment and some hotel services, it is our intent to significantly bolster that back-up power to support the core hotel services. With this improvement, we will better ensure guest comfort in the rare instance of a loss of main power," Gerry Cahill, president and CEO of Carnival Cruise Lines, said in a statement.

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In February, the Carnival Triumph lost power after an engine fire and thousands of passengers were left stranded in the Gulf of Mexico for several days when the ship's backup power systems also failed.

The beleaguered cruise line has had several problems since then, including more power outages and canceled trips. Carnival also owns Costa, whose Concordia ship hit rocks off the coast of Italy and capsized on Jan. 13, 2012, killing 32 people.

Last month, a Carnival Cruise Lines ship was stuck at a Caribbean port with equipment trouble, adding to the company's public relations nightmare.

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The Coast Guard commander who oversees all marine investigations told ABC News that six Carnival vessels are currently being investigated for various problems.

On Wednesday, Carnival also announced the formation of a Safety & Reliability Review Board of "outside experts with significant expertise in marine and occupational safety, reliability and maintenance, marine regulatory compliance and quality control/assurance."

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