Cruise Ship to be Inspected on First Coast

Thursday, August 17, 2006
The Captain of the Port of Jacksonville has ordered a Carnival Cruise Lines ship be inspected at sea before it can return to the First Coast. The Carnival Cruise ship Celebration, based out of Jacksonville, is limping back to port at below its top speed after an accident in the Bahamas. The Coast Guard says an engine propeller struck the ocean floor while docking in Nassau. They say oil from the ship was spilled into the ocean and the ship was damaged.

Coast Guard inspectors want to take a close look at the ship's systems for two reasons: to make sure there's no further risk of environmental damage and to ensure the ship's steering will hold up as it heads into the congested St. Johns River and up to Dames Point to dock. Right now, no passengers are in any danger, explained Coast Guard Commander Jim McLaughlin, who's overseeing the Guard's response from its Jacksonville Sector. Wednesday night, Coast Guard inspectors from the First Coast will board the ship to test her propellers, engines, and steering. The team may also question the crew.

Those inspectors could also run into plenty of unhappy passengers. Their five-day Bahamas cruise only actually stopped in Key West. source: First Coast News

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