Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Tugboats, Navy copters head for cruise ship damaged by fire off Mexico

Tugboats assigned to bring a dead-in-the-water cruise ship into Ensenada will not reach the ship until midday at the earliest, the cruise company said Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Navy plans to deliver 70,000 pounds of bread, canned milk and other food to the ship. The supplies are being flown from North Island Naval Air Station in Coronado to the aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan. The carrier's helicopters will then transfer the supplies to the cruise ship.

The carrier was ordered to depart from its training maneuvers and steam toward the Carnival Splendor, reported to be 150-to-200 miles south of San Diego.

La-me-cruise-ship The 952-foot-long ship had a fire in an aft engine compartment Monday. There were no injuries, but the fire knocked out several systems on the ship and left it without power.

The ship, with 3,299 passengers and 1,167 crew members, was on the first day of a seven-day cruise from Long Beach to Puerto Vallarta when the fire broke out.

Passengers will receive a full refund and reimbursement for expenses in returning to Long Beach, the cruise company, Miami-based Carnival Cruise Lines, said.

While air-conditioning, hot-food and telephone services remain inoperable, the flush toilets have been restored to service, the company said.

Family members seeking information can call 1-888-290-5095.

-- Tony Perry in San Diego

Comments () | Archives (25)

I was on a cruise ship that had a medical emergency on board. Ironically, it was very near the spot where the Carnival Splendor is now stopped. The Navy played a role in that one, too.

A guest speaker collapsed during his lecture on the last full day of the cruise. We found out later he had a herniated intestinal obstruction. The first indication of trouble was that the ship was going full speed and, by my GPS, would reach San Diego by 8 PM that evening, not the expected 4 AM the next morning.

After about two hours, the Captain came on the PA and told everyone about the need to evacuate an ill passenger and said we were making "best speed" to a rendezvous point with a Navy helicopter from San Diego. The transfer was done by stretcher hoist and the man was transferred to a hospital, where he had successful surgery. (I've watched many helicopter operations and those guys make it look easier than it is.)

Chalk up another win for the US Navy.

USN, Retired

Yet another reason I would never want to go on a cruise...

Thank God for the United States Navy, and the Marine Corps too! Our great military will come to the aid of American citizens, and non-US citizens as well, regardless of wherever they may be located in the world. It is the American way and it is one of the reasons why we maintain warships such as the USS Ronald Reagan. As for the fire aboard the cruise ship, whoever allowed the fire to happen should be keel-hauled! That is all.

Go Norweign.

The fact that they are using the Navy is a travesty!

No tax dollars should be spent in this operation. The work should be done by a private company. Multiple companies can compete for the job, and the lowest bid gets it!

I am sure our government is going to waste tens of thousands of dollars in this operation. What a waste of money!

And Carnival reimburses the Navy for all of the assistance? Seems like the Navy is Carnival's get-out-of-jail card. I'm not cool with paying for Carnival's mistakes.

I can't imagine being on a cruise ship with bathrooms and showers not working. No hot coffee... Cruises are supposed to be luxurious not filled with tension.

Hey, wait a minute isn't this another example of tax payer money bailing out the private sector?
As a true conservative, I believe that the company should have been responsible for saving the ship, and if they didn't, then the market would take care of it by having that company go out of business...

Why would they need 16 pounds of emergency food per person to last until rescue if they were set for a week's travel? There is no way they didn't have enough unrefrigerated food to last...

I thought we maintained warships so we can dominate the world and take things as we wish.

These passengers are getting a sweet deal. A Mexican Riviera cruise can cost around $1500 for a couple. For a day or two of minor discomfort, they get their money back, and a free cruise.

I'll bet a large number of those passengers are still gonna try to squeeze the cruise line out of some more money or freebies. That's the American way.

If this happened on the first day of the trip, why are they already out of supplies? Do crusie ships need to resupply every one or two days?

I'm scheduled to go on the same cruise in a few weeks. I'll have to add a few things to my packing list: whistle, desalination pump, flares, protein bars, flashlights, and my own personal floating device. Guess I've watched 'Titanic' way too many times.

Could be call adventure as long as everybody is safe

I like "could be an adventure"... indeed attitude is everything. The ship is laden with food they cannot chill and cannot cook. They aren't out of food.

I also marvel at the Navy "rescue". I hope Carnival/Princess has the means to reimburse for the help.

Some the posts here reveal a few things:

1. Maritime law isn't widely understood.
2. Our conservative brothers don't believe that American resources should be used to rescue Americans suffering from the consequences of an accident.
3. Some people that post responses don't fully read or fully understand what they've read, i.e.: food not needing refrigeration and suitable for serving uncooked was needed to sustain passengers and crew.

Jaime Chambers, KTLA reporter, dramatically begins his video story about the Carnival cruise ship, posted on LATimes.com: "IT MIGHT BE THE WORST CRUISE EVER." Come on, Jaime!!! Have you ever heard of the TITANIC??? LOL Why does local TV news have to hype so much? Where DO they get these reporters?

I never want to go on a cruise, not only do things like this constantly happen, but when you pull into port you are "those cruise people". Ugh.

Just completed a week cruise on Splendor...Navy food would be superior...

I trust the taxpayer is going to be reiumbursed for this? My Dog, don't these people have plans in place for an engine failure besides calling on the government??

seriously, who finds a cruise to be that appealing? maybe on a 40ft sail boat with only you and your wife (or partner), but c'mon, there is nothing appealing about:

-a hotel at sea
-being surrounded by thousands of people and their ill-mannered kids
-doing everything on this ship that you could have done on land
-spending 3 days to get somewhere, 1 day at the destination, then spending 3 days getting back

Ok who is going pay for all this

Question for those who are concerned about who will pay: If you were a stranded US citizen and needed help during a disaster, would you really want that help withheld because the people best equiped to render aid were the US Government? I don't think that's the way things work when natural disasters occur. I'm sure the cruise line will be ask to shoulder some of the costs but seriously... do you not want these people to get help? Now if you ask me about a $100 hammer or toilet seat, then I say full speed ahead on cutting costs...but not here.

Truely sad that when another Country has an accident or tragedy so called "Taxpayers" do complain about helping but when it is our own people we all of a sudden have a problem. If the Navy and government are here to help the citizen of this country then what are they here for?

If people are in need of help due to natural disaster then I'm all for helping. If however they are in need of help in relation to working with a business I believe in helping but requiring reimbursement from the business. It's like saying the government should pay for all cars that break down because when it happens the owner needs help.

Carnival should not be absolved from responsibility of having a disaster plan in place to respond to this event. Like BP Carnival was "making it up " as they went along. Irresponsible? Absolutely!
Carnival was thrilled to have the $236 million no bid contract from FEMA after Hurricane Katrina--for temporary housing. Gee it seems the money only goes one way. We the taxpayers should not have to cover the costs of the Navy's emergency response. This should come from Carnival's insurance policies or their coffer.


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.


Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: