Oceania ship to be out of service for nine weeks following fatal engine room fire

Oceania Cruises’ ship Insignia will be out of service for more than two months following an engine room fire which killed three workers and injured another crew member.

The line has been forced to cancel a 24-day cruise over Christmas from Miami and the first three legs of an unprecedented 180-day round the world voyage.

The world cruise, which had been due to depart from Miami on January 10, will now begin in modified form in Singapore on March 22. Fares for the cruise began at $41,999.

The fire on the ship occurred on December 11 in St Lucia while it was on a 10-day sailing from Puerto Rico. The 656 passengers on board at the time were safely evacuated from the ship and flown to Miami and the remainder of the cruise was cancelled.

Parent company Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings has now confirmed that repairs to Insignia are expected to take about nine weeks.

President and CEO Kevin Sheehan said: “The timing of repairs has unfortunately required the cancellation of Insignia’s holiday voyage along with the modification of the world cruise.

“We understand how disappointing this news must be to our valued guests and we extend our sincere appreciation for their co-operation and understanding.”

The financial impact on the fourth quarter of 2014 and the first quarter of 2015 is estimated to be a reduction in earnings of approximately $0.05 and $0.05 per share, net of insurance proceeds, respectively, the company said.

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