'I was shaking all over': Cruise ship damaged during storm

MIAMI -- A Royal Caribbean cruise ship ran into high winds and rough seas in the Atlantic Ocean on Sunday, forcing frightened passengers into their cabins as their belongings flew about.

See Full Article

Passengers described howling winds and waves as high as 30 feet, but the cruise line says no injuries were reported and the ship suffered minor damage but was safe to remain at sea.

"I was shaking all over," passenger Shara Strand of New York City wrote to The Associated Press via Facebook on Monday. "Panic attack, things like that ... I've been on over 20 cruises, I've been through a hurricane, it was never like this. Never. Everyone is saying they never saw anything like last night."

Sixteen-year-old passenger Gabriella Lairson says she and her father, Sam, could feel the boat begin to sway by 2:30 p.m. The captain directed passengers to their cabins. There, the Lairsons heard glasses shatter in the bathroom, and they put their belongings in drawers and closets to prevent them from flying across the room. They ventured out on the balcony, where Sam Lairson shot video showing wave after wave rising below them.

"The winds were so strong that I thought the phone would blow from my hands," Sam Lairson, of Ocean City, New Jersey, said in an email. "After that we had to keep the doors to the balconies sealed."

The ship, with more than 4,500 guests and 1,600 crew members, was sailing from Cape Liberty, New Jersey and was scheduled to arrive in Port Canaveral, Florida, at noon Monday. The weather will delay that arrival, but Royal Caribbean spokeswoman Cynthia Martinez said in an email that she doesn't have an updated time or schedule. Rosalind Harvey, spokeswoman for Port Canaveral, says officials there have been told the ship will arrive at 7 a.m. Tuesday.

Gabriella Lairson says that by early Monday morning, people were out and about on the ship, checking out the minor damage in some public areas. Some staterooms also were damaged, according to a Royal Caribbean statement.

Lairson praised the crew and captain. "They did everything they could to make us feel comfortable even though they were not allowed to be out around the ship that often," she wrote to The AP on Facebook. "The Captain regularly gave us updates when he could through the whole storm."

Martinez confirmed that passengers were asked to stay in their rooms and said they were given complimentary access to their minibars.

Robert Huschka, the executive editor of the Detroit Free Press, was aboard and started tweeting when the inclement weather hit. He told USA Today that the ordeal was "truly terrifying." He described the cruise director nervously giving updates, and he later posted photos of shattered glass panels on a pool deck.

But Huschka was among passengers who found a silver lining in the storm. On Monday morning, he posted: "The good news? They never lost the Super Bowl signal. Perfect TV picture throughout storm!"

And despite her own worries, Strand said her daughter, 8-month-old Alexa, slept through the entire episode.

Associated Press writers Janelle Cogan in Atlanta and Tamara Lush in Tampa, Florida, contributed



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Kittens rescued from abuse in Prince Albert, Sask., die

    Canada News CBC News
    Five kittens rescued from abuse and attempts to light them on fire last month in Prince Albert, Sask., have died. "It's a very sad ending," said Liana Maloney, manager of the Prince Albert Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Source
  • Bono, the Edge donating time for Canada Day concert, government says

    Canada News CBC News
    U2 members Bono and the Edge are donating their time as a "birthday present to Canada" and will not be paid a performance fee for appearing at Canada 150 celebrations on Parliament Hill July 1, a spokesperson from Canadian Heritage says. Source
  • Sept. 11 worker facing deportation is freed from detention

    World News CTV News
    NEW YORK -- A onetime Sept. 11 World Trade Center cleanup volunteer who faces possible deportation over a 1990 drug conviction but was pardoned by the governor was freed from immigration detention on Wednesday. Carlos Cardona was released from custody and will be required to check in periodically pending the outcome of his immigration case, a spokeswoman for U.S. Source
  • Several injured, horse euthanized in stage coach crash near Williams Lake, B.C.

    Canada News CTV News
    WILLIAMS LAKE, B.C. - RCMP say several people were injured and a horse had to be euthanized when a stage coach plunged about 12 meters down a ravine near Williams Lake, B.C. The horse-pulled coach belonged to a local First Nation that was taking part in an annual ride that marks the start of the Williams Lake Stampede, which begins Thursday. Source
  • B.C. man accused of wanting to 'destroy' ex-wife found guilty in online harassment

    Canada News CTV News
    VANCOUVER -- A man accused of trying to emotionally ruin the life of his ex-wife using online posts was found guilty Wednesday of criminal harassment by a B.C. Supreme Court jury. The court heard Patrick Fox's tactics included threatening emails, blog postings and a website about Desiree Capuano, who lives in Arizona. Source
  • Quebec premier defends remarks about Muslims in wake of Flint attack

    Canada News CTV News
    Quebec Premier Philippe Couillard insists there is nothing shocking about his recent comments about Muslims having a responsibility in the fight against terrorism. Following the arrest of a Muslim Montrealer in the stabbing of a police officer at the Flint airport in Michigan last week, Couillard said terrorist events like it can't be disconnected "from Islam in general. Source
  • North Korea warns U.S. it will keep building nuclear arsenal

    World News CTV News
    North Korea's UN ambassador is warning the United States and the rest of the world that his country will keep building up its nuclear arsenal regardless of sanctions, pressure or military attack. Kim In Ryong told the Security Council on Wednesday that the "hostile policy" of the United States and its military manoeuvrs with South Korea in April and May are responsible for bringing the situation on the Korean Peninsula closer to the brink of nuclear war than ever before. Source
  • Hot weather, dead trees and too much rain add up to dangerous fire season in California

    World News CBC News
    No one joins the California Conservation Corps. to cut down trees. But where visitors to Sequoia National Park see grey trunks and leafless branches, forestry worker Jose Castaneda sees kindling. "It feels really sad to see so many dead trees," he says. Source
  • Record-breaking Canadian sniper saved Iraqi lives according to special forces general

    Canada News Toronto Sun
    OTTAWA — The sniper who shattered the record for the longest confirmed kill also saved lives, the deputy commander of Canadian special forces said. Brig.-Gen. Peter Dawe told The Canadian Press on Wednesday that fighters from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant were gathering for an attack on an unsuspecting Iraqi military unit when the Canadian commando fired the 3.5-kilometre shot. Source
  • NAFTA lawsuits target Canada most, U.S. hasn't lost yet

    Canada News CTV News
    OTTAWA - When it comes to the North American Free Trade Agreement, Canada can safely claim the title of biggest loser in terms of lawsuits. Since the agreement came into force in 1994, Canada has been sued 39 times by foreign companies claiming Canadian policies have violated their rights under NAFTA. Source