MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - Carnival Cruise officials said one of their ships is in the process of being towed to Mobile's port after the engine room caught fire.
The Carnival Triumph was on a four day cruise out of Galveston when the incident occurred Sunday, February 10. The ship has been without propulsion in the Gulf of Mexico since that time.
Officials said the ship's automatic fire extinguishing systems activated and the fire was successfully extinguished. There were no injuries to guests or crew members.
Monday, February 11, the first of two tugboats arrived and tied up to the ship. The second tugboat is expected in the early hours of Tuesday morning.
Officials said they originally planned to tow the ship to Progreso, Mexico, the closest port to the ship's location early Sunday. They said, however, since that time, the ship has drifted about 90 miles north due to strong currents putting the ship equidistant to Mobile.
They said given the strength of the currents, it is preferable to head north to Mobile, rather than attempt to tow against them. The ship is expected to arrive on sometime Thursday.
Carnival said they will provide the transportation necessary to get guests home from Mobile They said Mobile also provides simpler re-entry, particularly for the 900 guests onboard traveling without passports.
Officials said they have maintained constant contact with the ship's officers, and all of the guests are safe.
The ship has maintained emergency generator power since the fire occurred and the technical team on board has been successful in gradually restoring auxiliary power to operate some basic hotel functions. Currently, public and cabin toilets are operational in certain sections of the ship, power has been restored to a limited number of elevators, and some power in the Lido dining area is providing for hot coffee and limited hot food service.
All guests on the current Carnival Triumph voyage will receive a full refund for the cruise, along with transportation expenses. In addition, they will receive a future cruise credit equal to the amount paid for this voyage, as well as reimbursement of all shipboard purchases during the voyage, with the exception of gift shop and casino charges.
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