More than 3,000 passengers on a Carnival Cruise
Line ship that lost propulsion after a fire were due Wednesday to
spend their fourth night aboard the crippled vessel in the Gulf of
Mexico before their expected arrival on land on Thursday.
The luxury cruise ship Triumph, owned by the British-American Carnival Cruise Lines, was being towed back to land by the US Coast Guard. It was expected to reach the port at Mobile, Alabama on Thursday.
Numerous passengers have complained of smelly overflowing toilets, overheated rooms and too little food. People were sleeping on the deck and in hallways to avoid the poor conditions, US media quoted people whose loved ones were on the boat as saying.
"We're terribly sorry for the inconvenience, discomfort and frustration our guests are feeling," cruise line president and chief executive Gerry Cahill said. "We know they expected a fantastic vacation, and clearly that is not what they received."
The engine room fire occurred on Sunday when the ship was off Mexico's Yucatan coast. None of the 3,143 passengers was injured, but the fire cut off the ship's propulsion and left it stranded.
Officials originally planned to tow the ship to Mexico, but strong currents pushed it north, and rather than try to make the rescue boats pull against the currents, officials chose to take the ship to Mobile.
Cahill said cruise line personnel on the ship and on shore were working around the clock to take care of passengers and get them home safely. The Triumph was at the end of a four-day cruise when it lost propulsion.
On Monday, the vessel regained auxiliary power for basic hotel functions, Cahill said. The power has allowed for some hot food service and toilets to begin functioning in parts of the ship.
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