Cruise Ship Adrift Off Mexico: Carnival Boat Suffers Engine Fire; 4,200 Aboard

Monday, 11 Feb 2013 08:13 AM

By Michael Mullins

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The Carnival cruise ship "Triumph" is adrift in the Gulf of Mexico with more than 4,200 passengers onboard after an engine fire Sunday morning left it dead in the water according to a cruise line official.

No injuries have been reported in the fire.

In order to contain the blaze, the ship's automatic fire extinguishing system kicked in, leaving the vessel without propulsion approximately 150 miles off the coast of Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula coast, the Carnival line said in a statement.

"The ship's technical crew has determined the vessel will need to be towed to port. A tugboat is en route to the ship's location and will tow the vessel to Progreso, Mexico, which is the closest port to the ship’s current location. This will enable us to disembark guests and get them home as quickly as possible," Carnival said Sunday night.

"The ship is expected to arrive in Progreso Wednesday afternoon and guests will be flown from there back to the U.S. . . . Another Carnival ship, the Carnival Elation, is currently on scene and transferring additional food and beverage provisions to the Carnival Triumph."

In addition to Carnival's other ship assisting passengers, the U.S. Coast Guard told CNN that it has sent a cutter, expected to arrive Monday morning, to provide further assistance where needed.

According to the cruise line, the ship was headed back to Galveston, Texas, when the fire occurred, with some 3,143 passengers and 1,086 crew members onboard.

A full refund will be given to all guests on the current Carnival Triumph voyage in addition to transportation expenses, the cruise line said. Also, in an attempt to compensate for the inconvenience, Carnival, which has already reimbursed all shipboard purchases made during the voyage, except for gift shop and casino charges, will be awarding each of the 3,000-plus passengers a future cruise credit equal to the amount paid for this voyage.

Carnival Triumph's next two voyages, Feb. 11 and 16, have been cancelled as a result of the fire. All passengers with tickets for those cruises will likewise receive full refunds and reimbursements for any non-refundable travel expenses.

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