Engine problems on the Norwegian Pearl.

Thousands of passengers are stuck in Barcelona on a stricken cruise ship while another of its voyages has been cancelled with just days’ notice

Norwegian Pearl, which was sailing a 13-day voyage from northern Europe to the Mediterranean when it experienced a technical issue - leaving passengers stranded in Barcelona
Norwegian Pearl

A mechanical issue has left thousands of cruise passengers stuck in Barcelona, while another of its voyages has been cancelled entirely with just days’ notice.

Norwegian Pearl was sailing a 13-day voyage from northern Europe to the Mediterranean when it experienced a technical issue – causing it to travel at a slower speed.

The problem meant the ship, which has 2,300 guests on board, missed a stop in Palma, Majorca, as well as Monte Carlo and is currently stranded in the Spanish city.

Additionally, an upcoming cruise of the Greek Isles and Italy, which was due to depart on Friday (July 5), has been cancelled much to the fury of its passengers.

She said: ‘We were supposed to depart to Livorno at 6am and only miss the second port of call.

‘They changed it around 9am to tell us we may not be able to go to Civitavecchia (Rome), will not be travelling to Livorno, will be receiving a 50 per cent refund and credit for a future cruise. If guests wanted to fully disembark they were allowed to and to make other travel arrangements.

‘Then they announced we will not be sailing to Civitavecchia, our last port of call where most guests have flights booked. We are now kindly asked to disembark the ship by Friday at noon.’

A picture taken by Cheyenne Lewis, a passenger on the cruise, showing people lining up at guest services to try and re-arrange their travel plans

A picture was taken by Cheyenne Lewis, a passenger on the cruise, showing people lining up at guest services to try and re-arrange their travel plans

She continued: ‘A good portion of the guests aren’t from Europe and will be spending a lot in fees to get to another destination. They are reimbursing $300 for airfare costs and have given customers an hour of free WiFi.

‘However, flight tickets will soon run out or be price gouged.

‘I was fortunate enough to have a WiFi package so when the first announcement about disembarking came on, I just bought my family and I flights to Rome and a hotel room.

‘However, from what I’ve heard walking around, some of the flights are not remotely close to the $300 guests will be reimbursed.’

Another passenger Kelly Flint expressed her frustration on Twitter posting: ‘Stuck on Norwegian Pearl in Barcelona. Already missed two shore stops. No info from NCL.

‘Learned on the internet that next cruise has been cancelled. Don’t know how to get to Rome for flights home. Come on NCL.’

Several passengers took to Twitter to vent their frustration at being stuck in Barcelona

Several passengers took to Twitter to vent their frustration at being stuck in Barcelona

Jessica Monroe also took to social media to vent her anger.

‘Still stuck on the Norwegian Pearl in Barcelona. They said we’d leave at 6am, pretty sure the engine still won’t start. Can they update us so I can book a flight out of Barcelona?’

While Simon also tweeted: ‘I was on the Norwegian Epic last February when we missed all ports of call due to engine problems. Used credits to book Norwegian Pearl – now cancelled due to engine problems. Want to vacation with you again but you’re not making it easy.’

A spokesperson for Norwegian Cruise Line said: ‘On July 1, 2019, Norwegian Pearl, which is currently sailing a 13-day repositioning cruise from Northern Europe to the Mediterranean, experienced a mechanical issue which necessitates that she travel at a reduced speed.

‘As such, she did not call to Palma, Majorca, and instead sailed directly to Barcelona where further assessments were made.

‘Due to necessary repairs, Norwegian Pearl’s upcoming Greek Isles and Italy sailing departing on July 5, 2019, will be cancelled.

‘We recognise the disappointment and inconvenience our guests have experienced as a result of this unforeseen situation and we offer our sincere apologies.

‘Our team is working diligently to assist all of our guests, and we thank them for their continued support and loyalty.’

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Viking Sky suffered engine failure and rescue helicopters are evacuating people


Viking Sun’s position on AIS Ship @18:25 today

A cruise ship with 1,300 passengers on board has sent out a mayday call after suffering an engine failure in heavy winds near Norway.

The ship, named Viking Sky, was drifting towards land when it let out the distress signal.

Helicopters have been evacuating people from the vessel amid high waves and strong winds.

It was later able to restart one engine, was anchored just over a mile from land and is no longer adrift.

Image result for viking sun

Viking Sky issued a mayday call after suffering engine failure in high winds off the coast of Norway

The ship battled heavy winds and high waves in Hustadvika, an area of the Norwegian coastline known to be dangerous

The ship battled heavy winds and high waves in Hustadvika, an area of the Norwegian coastline known to be dangerous

Up to 90 passengers have been hoisted up one by one from the deck of the vessel and airlifted to a village located just north of the town of Molde on Norway’s west coast. 

One woman messaged family to let them know she had to be stretchered off the ship after heavy waves battered the ship and left her ‘submerged underwater’. 

The passenger said: ‘A wave smashed a door open right behind us and we were submerged under water.

‘We thought that was it and my knee has been damaged.

‘I’ve been stretchered off which was just as scary.’ 

One passenger messaged family to let them know she had to be stretchered off the ship after heavy waves battered the ship and left her ‘submerged under water’

And rough seas have forced two rescue ships to turn back as even tugboats are not sure they will be able to reach the stricken cruise liner.

The stretch, named Hustadvika, is known as one of the most dangerous sections of the Norwegian coast with many shipwrecks in the region.

A spokesperson said: ‘If we need to evacuate everyone, it will take a long time.’

The ship, built in 2017, belongs to Viking Ocean Cruises founded by Norwegian billionaire Torstein Hagen. 

According to the company website, its passenger capacity is 930.

Several boats and four helicopters took part in the rescue and facilities to receive passengers have been set up on land.

But only 10 to 15 people can be taken per flight on emergency helicopters sent to airlift passengers to safety.  

It is thought there are currently still more than 885 passengers on board. 

The wind was blowing at a speed of 38 knots, police told Norwegian newspaper VG.

All search and rescue teams in the region are mobilising, including 60 volunteers from the Norwegian Red Cross, a spokesman said.

Viking’s operational headquarters, located in Basel, Switzerland, did not respond when contacted by telephone.

Royal Princess not expected to miss next cruise

Royal Princess not expected to miss next cruise

By Tom Stieghorst
Princess Cruises said it does not anticipate having to cancel the Sept. 27 cruise from Barcelona of the Royal Princess.

The newest Princess ship ended its most recent cruise early because of an unexpected power blackout.

Passengers departed in Naples, three days short of Barcelona, and were given a full refund and a voucher for a 25% credit on a future cruise.

Princess said it expects technicians to complete repairs on the ship while it sails without passengers to Barcelona. The next cruise is a 12-day Mediterranean itinerary that ends in Venice.