Norwegian Cruise Ship Runs Aground Off Bermuda After Steering Failure

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May 19, 2015

Norwegian Dawn file photo. Wikimedia Commons

ReutersUpdate (May 19): The Norwegian Dawn has been refloated after running aground earlier Tuesday just off Bermuda. Here’s the full Statement from Norwegian Cruise Lines:

On Tuesday, May 19th at approximately 5:00 pm ET, Norwegian Dawn had a temporary malfunction of its steering system, causing the ship to sail slightly off course as the ship was departing Bermuda, resulting in the vessel making contact with the sea bed. All guests and crew are safe and there were absolutely no injuries.

The ship’s officers, engineers and an independent dive team have confirmed the structural integrity of the ship. With high-tide this evening, the ship was floated and moved to a nearby anchorage position where it will remain overnight. The ship will be thoroughly inspected in Bermuda by DNVGL, the ship’s classification society, before returning to Boston. The ship is fully operational with the full complement of onboard services available to guests.

The ship is sailing on a seven-night Boston to Bermuda cruise with 2,443 passengers and 1,059 crew. We will provide additional updates in the morning when more information becomes available.


May 19 (Reuters) – A Norwegian Cruise Line ship ran aground on a reef on Tuesday after leaving Bermuda but there were no reports of any injuries, the company said.

The Norwegian Dawn was returning to Boston with 2,675 passengers and more than 1,000 crew, U.S. media reports said. Norwegian Cruise Line said all guests and crew were safe.

In a statement, the world’s third-largest cruise operator said its ship was leaving King’s Wharf, Bermuda, at about 5:00 p.m. when it temporarily lost power.

“The ship’s propulsion was affected and, at which time, the vessel made contact with the channel bed,” the Miami-based company said.

“The ship has full power and onboard services continue as scheduled. The ship’s team is currently assessing the situation and we will provide more information as it becomes available.”

Photos posted on Twitter by people onboard showed passengers, some with drinks in hand, strolling on deck and peering over the rail at what looks like coral below in the bright blue sea.

A small boat launched to check for damage can be seen, as well as two tug boats, and scuba divers in wetsuits preparing to investigate below the waterline.

“Ship shuddered, then stopped really fast,” wrote one Twitter user, Rachel Hansen. “The captain said we won’t be moving for a while.”

Norwegian Cruise Line operates 13 purpose-built ships on routes spanning North America, the Mediterranean, the Baltic, Central America and the Caribbean. (Reporting by Daniel Wallis in Denver; Additional reporting by Steve Gorman and Dan Whitcomb in Los Angeles; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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