Splendid holiday comes to an abrupt end

MV Carnival Splendor has suffered and engine room fire and was adrift off the Baja coast in Northwest Mexico, in the Pacific Ocean. The fire was detected in the aft engine room of the 113,323 gt ship around 6 am, and confirm put out at about 9 am local time. Ship’s engineers have been able to restore some basic hotel services, but overall the ship is reportedly “dead in the water”.

The Carnival Splendor is one of Carnival newest ships, having been built by Fincantieri, in Genoa Italy, and made her maiden voyage in August 2008. The Panamanian flagged vessel is classed by Lloyd’s Register.

Here is the US Coast Guard’s press release for the initial incident.

Coast Guard Responding to Fire Aboard Cruise Ship November 8, 2010 ALAMEDA, Calif. — The U.S. Coast Guard is responding to reports of a fire that occurred earlier today aboard the 952-foot cruise ship, Carnival Splendor. Initial reports of the fire were received by the U.S. Coast Guard at 8 a.m., today. Three Coast Guard cutters, a Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules aircraft, a vessel in the Automated Mutual-Assistance Vessel Rescue System, a Mexican Navy 140-foot patrol boat and aircraft are responding. The AMVER vessel Dresden Express, a 965-foot container ship, is currently on scene. The C-130 is expected to be on scene at approximately 3:00 p.m., followed by the Coast Guard Cutters Edisto, Morgenthau and Aspen. The Carnival Splendor is presently located 150 miles south of San Diego and has 3,299 passengers and 1,167 crewmembers aboard. The Coast Guard Rescue Coordination Center Alameda is currently in contact with all response assets as well as Carnival Cruise Line’s operations’ center. No injuries to passengers or crew have been reported. The fire was discovered in an aft engine room and was extinguished at approximately 9:10 a.m.; however, smoke remains in the area and the ship’s fire crews are on scene. The Carnival Splendor is a Panamanian-flagged vessel and sailed out of Long Beach, Calif. en route to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Media contact for Carnival Cruise Lines: (305) 406-5464, media@carnival.com. For concerned family members, contact: 1-888-290-5095Carnival’s press release can be found here. Here’s is another story. Wikipedia’s piece on the ship, and here’s another sales pitch.

Update: The ship was safely towed by commercial tugs to San Diego, on Nov 11, and all passengers have disembarked.

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