Another cruise ship disaster is currently making headlines after an engine fire started on board the Carnival Cruise ship, Triumph.
Passengers were stuck with no running water or air conditioning, long food lines in which they received spoiled or rotting food, no toilet facilities and were forced to sleep on the outside decks. Passengers were left with a nightmare of a trip, when all they wanted was a relaxing vacation. How could Carnival, such a well-known cruise line, let this happen?
According to the Huffington Post, maritime attorney Charlie Gouris said this was unacceptable.
“This accident, this fire in particular, was preventable. Since 1999, we have had an average of four cruise-ship fires a year,” said Gouris.
I really can’t stand that Carnival didn’t do more to help the passengers while they were on the ship. Reflecting on the living conditions out on the decks, senior Ryan Marder made a good point regarding possible health issues on board the ship.
“Being out in the cold air can send you into hypothermia,” said Marder. “However, since it was only a couple days, the people onboard the Carnival Cruise shouldn’t have been affected that much by the frigid air.”
Just when it seemed things couldn’t get any worse for these passengers, they did.
“One of the buses carrying rescued passengers from Mobile to New Orleans broke down. Carnival has already offered passengers a refund, cruise credit, and $500, but this disaster may prove too big to be solved with money,” according to an article in Business Insider.
Yes the refund, credit and money is positive, but if I were a passenger, I would be very scared. Not knowing what was going on would be the worst part and Carnival Cruise didn’t do a good job of updating passengers.
Today, social media and pictures online are so difficult to control from a public relations perspective, said Jean Sandlin, an assistant professor of communication.
Sandlin said that the effort to communicate with people on the ship was a problem.
The ship “didn’t do a good enough job of reducing uncertainty,” said Sandlin.
“Despite Carnival’s recent problems, the brand is still used by almost 50 percent of worldwide cruise passengers,” states an article from Business Insider.
Even though this event is not something that makes you want to go on a cruise, some tickets for spring break are already booked. This is the case for senior Dali Quintanilla.
“I’m trusting of the cruise line that they’ve addressed any kind of issue they may have with their ships and I’m still excited about [my] trip over spring break,” said Quintanilla.
Junior Greg Salazar isn’t as forgiving.
“It is a rather unfortunate event. I feel that there should be an external review board to assess the technical conditions of their cruise ships in order to prevent this kind of debacle to happen again,” said Salazar.
According to The Boston Globe, before the passengers even got to land, Carnival CEO Micky Arison, who is also the Miami Heat franchise owner, went to a Miami Heat game.
Pictures were taken at the game and he looked to be having a good time, while passengers were stuck at sea in horrid conditions.
Sandlin thinks that the CEO going to a game while there is so much going on with one of his cruises shows his indifference. It seems to me that he didn’t even care about the disaster.
About a year ago, I went on a Carnival cruise to Ensenada, Mexico. It was an amazing experience. I went expecting to have an amazing time and I did. But if it was anything like what the passengers aboard the Triumph had to deal with, I would have flipped out.
The thought that in this day and age Carnival does not have a perfected plan to deal with these situations astonishes me.
Published Feb. 27, 2013