Cruise

“Fiasco da Gama”: engine alarm triggers cruise ship blackout

Passengers onboard a luxury liner were left thankful their ship wasn’t sinking after an engine alarm triggered a blackout, stranding them at sea for several hours.

Cruise and Maritime Voyages’ Vasco da Gama was approaching Adelaide’s Outer Harbour when an alarm sounded in the engine control room around 5:45am, according to a statement from the line.

The ship, which was carrying 828 passengers and 600 crew, was travelling from Sydney to Adelaide when the alarm was triggered, prompting the captain to switch off power to the entire vessel leaving passengers in the dark, with no water and some speculating the ship was on a lean.

“The cabins were completely blacked out, there was no emergency lighting, the toilets didn’t work, there was no water available,” one passenger named John told ABC News.

“The ship was on a list of about 15 degrees. There was no communication from the captain until about 7:10am at which time he said everything was under control.

John said his wife had a specialist appointment booked for that morning which she had to cancel due to the delay.

“There were a number of people who’ve missed flights and are quite disappointed,” he said, joking that people had begun to call it “Fiasco da Gama”.

Another passenger told the national broadcaster she was grateful “we weren’t sinking”.

It was the second hiccup the cruise experienced after the Tasmanian leg of the journey was cancelled due to bad weather.

Dean Brazier, the managing director of Cruise and Maritime Voyages, praised the crew’s effort during the incident.

“They checked out what was going wrong, they found the incident, and there was no ongoing effect, so they then restarted the engines,” he told ABC News.

Cruise and Maritime Voyages said no cause for concern was identified and power was fully restored later in the morning. The line said the incident caused a delay of two hours.

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