Carnival Corporation announced that the severe weather caused by Hurricane Katrina and subsequent port closures resulted in the cancellation of one voyage and the shortening of two voyages, as well as other voyage disruptions and related costs, for the company's Carnival Cruise Lines brand.
In addition, Carnival Cruise Lines has two vessels, the Carnival Conquest and Sensation, which homeported out of New Orleans. Given the tremendous damage to New Orleans, the company does not expect these ships to operate from New Orleans for an extended period of time. The Carnival Conquest will relocate indefinitely to Galveston, Texas.
Carnival Cruise Lines has chartered three vessels, including the Sensation, along with the Holiday and Ecstasy - to the Military Sealift Command (MSC) on behalf of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) for a period of six months that will be used in the hurricane relief efforts
. The charters will begin Monday, Sept. 5, aboard the Ecstasy and Sensation, docked in Galveston, and Thursday, Sept. 8, aboard the Holiday, docked in her homeport of Mobile, Ala.
While it is difficult to determine the full financial impact resulting from the above hurricane related events, the company currently believes that these events will reduce earnings by between $0.01 and $0.03 per share with most of the impact expected to fall in the fourth quarter of 2005.
"Our thoughts and prayers go out to the people of New Orleans and all of the Gulf Coast who have been so terribly devastated by this catastrophic event," said Micky Arison, Carnival Corporation & plc's chairman and CEO. "We know that all of our loyal guests, shareholders and employees are very pleased that we were able to join forces with
the federal government to participate in the extensive relief efforts that have been launched. We have every intention of re-launching cruise service from the great city of New Orleans as soon as the infrastructure is in place so that our ships may contribute to the economic recovery of the area," he added. "At the same time we apologize to those guests who have had their vacation plans disrupted by these cancellations but know that they will understand the extreme circumstances our country is facing and why this action is necessary," Arison said.
He noted that the Holiday is currently operating a cruise from Mobile, which has quickly recovered from hurricane damage. The Holiday will resume cruise service from Mobile at the conclusion of the charter.