GALVESTON, Texas — An engine fire on the cruise ship Carnival Triumph has caused the vessel to operate on emergency generator power, stranding it approximately 150 miles off the coast of the Yucatan Peninsula.
There are 3,143 guests and 1,086 crew members on board the four-day cruise that departed Galveston on Thursday. The fire occurred over the weekend, and now there are plans to tow the ship to Mexico where passengers will take a flight back to the U.S.
Toby Barlow’s wife, Anne, is on the cruise ship and he has been able to communicate with her by phone and text message.
“Basically she says, 'we are alright just scared,' ” Barlow told KHOU 11 News. “There is no power at all on the boat and no water.”
Barlow’s wife said passengers are being told a tug boat will arrive Monday to begin the process of towing the boat to port.
Officials confirmed a tugboat is en route to the ship’s location and will tow the vessel to Progreso, Mexico, which is the closest port to the ship’s current location. This will allow guests to disembark and get them home as quickly as possible. The ship is expected to arrive in Progreso on Wednesday afternoon.
Carnival said an automatic fire extinguishing system activated and the fire was contained to the aft engine room. There were no casualties or injuries to guests or crew.
All guests have been asked to remain in the ship’s public areas and open decks.
Another ship, the Carnival Elation, was on-scene and transferring additional food and beverage provisions to the Carnival Triumph, officials said.
Carnival said all guests on the current voyage will receive a full refund inclusive of gratuities and any transportation expenses.
The company said it is in the process of contacting the designated emergency contacts for all guests on board. Concerned family and loved ones of guests and crew may call 1-888-290-5095 or 1-305-406-5534.
Carnival has contacted guests booked on the next voyage, which was scheduled to depart Monday. Those guests have the option of cancelling now and receiving a full refund or waiting for further information to determine if a shortened, partial voyage may be possible.