Ovation of the Seas Drydocks in Zhoushan

Ovation of the Seas

The Ovation of the Seas is in Zhoushan, China, for an unscheduled drydock at a COSCO-run facility, prompting the cancellation of the ship’s the Sept. 21 and Sept. 26 cruises from Tianjin, China.

“We must conduct unscheduled maintenance on Ovation of the Seas,” Royal Caribbean said in a statement released to Cruise Industry News.

“Unfortunately, this means our September 21 and September 26 cruises from Beijing, China must be cancelled,” the company said. “Our booked guests will have the option to choose another sailing date on Quantum of the Seas or request a full refund of their cruise fare. The unscheduled work will help ensure guests continue to enjoy their time on board Ovation; there is no issue or concern with the seaworthiness of the ship. The decision was not taken lightly, and Royal Caribbean apologizes for the effect this adjustment will have on our guests’ vacation plans.”

In April of 2017, Royal Caribbean was also forced to cancel sailings on the ship for “maintenance on components of the ship’s propulsion system.”

U.S. Coast Guard: Anthem of the Seas Azipod Damaged in Storm

Photo credit: CANARYLUC / Shutterstock.com

Anthem of the Seas

One of two diesel-electric azipod units used to propel Royal Caribbean’s Anthem of the Seas sustained damage as the ship battled an intense hurricane-force storm off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina on Sunday.

The storm-damaged cruise ship returned to the Liberty Cruise Terminal in Bayonne, New Jersey on Wednesday evening and as crews continue to test the critical systems onboard the vessel while in port.

Representatives from the U.S. Coast Guard, the Bahamas Maritime Administration, and other organizations have been working closely with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines and technical specialists to ensure the ongoing repairs to the ship’s equipment are functioning as designed, the Coast Guard said Friday.

While damage from the storm has been reported as mostly cosmetic, the Coast Guard said Friday that the cruise ship’s port azipod unit, which is one component of the vessel’s propulsion system, burned out all four clutches and as a precaution had to be shut down for ship’s the return voyage to Bayonne.

Technicians aboard the cruise ship are replacing the clutches on both the starboard and port azipods as a precaution. Repairs and subsequent testing of the azipods are still ongoing.

Related Video: The Azipods Used to Power the World’s Largest Cruise Ships

All critical safety and lifesaving systems are also being tested under the supervision of the Bahamas and the U.S. Coast Guard officials to ensure that all equipment is functioning as designed prior to departing on its next voyage, which as of now is still expected for this Saturday.

Minor damage to the ship’s lifeboats is being addressed and thoroughly tested by the lifeboat manufacturer, the Coast Guard says.

“At this time all repairs appear to be on track and all systems tests are progressing satisfactorily,” according to the Coast Guard. “However, if anything is discovered during testing, the Coast Guard Captain of the Port will not allow the ship to sail from Bayonne until both Coast Guard and Bahamas Maritime Authorities are satisfied. The vessel will not be cleared to leave the port until all safety of life at sea requirements are met.”

As gCaptain has reported, the Coast Guard is supporting the Bahamas Maritime Administration in an ongoing investigation that will help determine if there are any contributing causal factors or lessons learned from the incident that could help prevent injuries or damage in the future.

The Royal Caribbean cruise ship Anthem of the Seas departed Bayonne, New Jersey last Saturday carrying 4,500 passengers and 1,600 crew on what was scheduled to be a 7-day roundtrip to the Bahamas. But by Sunday afternoon, the ship had sailed directly into the path of an rapidly-developing storm off Cape Hatteras, with 75 m.p.h winds and waves greater than 30 feet.

Coast Guard officials conducting the investigation are being assisted by personnel from the National Transportation Safety Board, according to the Coast Guard. The ongoing investigation could take some time but should not delay the vessel’s scheduled departure.

Royal Caribbean’s two Quantum-class ships, the Quantum of the Seas and the Anthem of the Seas, are fitted with two 20.5-megawatt ABB Azipod XO2300 propulsion units.

No Freedom of the Seas cancellations, just free onboard credit

No Freedom of the Seas cancellation, just free onboard credit

Several days ago Royal Caribbean had to inform passengers on Freedom of the Seas that they were unable to call at the private island of CocoCay, and also reduce the amount of time spent in St. Maarten due to an issue with it propulsion system. The cruise company has not cancelled the cruise or any future one, although they did issue free onboard credit.

Royal Caribbean has said the issue is due to the ships center fixipod, which is the same that affected Allure of the Seas, and that one of the bearings is not in good condition. The company made the decision to remove the propeller blade from the center pod and cruise 5 knots slower than usual, which will have repercussions on future sailings and their itineraries.

With the ship only being able to travel at 18 knots she will not be able to make all ports of call, and the time spent in certain ports will need to be adjusted. If this is the case, then Royal Caribbean will have to issue more onboard credit for free.

Royal Caribbean Blog reports that Freedom of the Seas is due a dry dock session in January 2015, which will be the perfect time for repairs to be made to the propulsion system. Once again, there will be no cancellation, just readjustments due to the ship moving at a slower speed.