Royal Caribbean cruise rescues 17 migrants off the Bahamas

Royal Caribbean cruise rescues 17 migrants off the Bahamas

Guests onboard Royal Caribbean’s Liberty Of The Seas applauded as the ship and its staff successfully completed a rescue mission in high winds.

This is the second migrant rescue in recent times after a Celebrity Cruise ship rescued 19 migrants off Florida last week. In this instance, a stroke of luck was involved with the Caribbean cruise liner opting against a day trip to their private island, ‘CocoCay’ and in turn spotted the small ship in distress.

Justin Bradford was a passenger onboard Liberty of the Seas and told Insider, “If you’re an American, you’ve seen people from Cuba making that trek on TV. But to see it in real life was really emotional — and everyone was in shock and disbelief.”

“At first, some people thought it was a buoy, but as we got closer, we realised: that’s a boat. There’s people out there.”

After announcing over the intercom that the boat was going to attempt a rescue mission Bradford said he could feel the boat slowing down, however due to high wind they could not send a rescue craft so the ship slowed to a halt and waited for the boat to make its way to the liner.

It got “really emotional, no matter what people think about immigration, seeing these people make a desperate effort like that makes you think: they had to be escaping something really bad.”

In a statement to Insider, Royal Caribbean said: “While en route to The Bahamas, Liberty of the Seas encountered a small vessel adrift and in need of assistance. The ship’s crew immediately launched a rescue operation, safely bringing 17 people onboard. The crew is actively giving them medical attention, and working with the United States Coast Guard.”

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