Carnival Magic Dented and Scraped Hitting Jamaica Pier in Strong Winds
One of Carnival Cruise Line’s large cruise ships, the 130,000 gross ton Carnival Magic, is a little worse for wear after heavy weather yesterday pushed the ship into the dock. The cruise ship remained overnight in Jamaica as an expert team was traveling to meet the ship and inspect the damage.
Pictures show the ship with dents and scrapes along a section of the starboard side where it was pushed against the dock by high winds and a strong surf. The ship’s captain Francesco La Farina confirmed that they had made contact saying “strong winds and swells caused the pier fender to collapse under pressure.”
The cruise ship, which is 1,004 feet in length, had arrived in Ocho Rios, Jamaica early on Tuesday, February 6, with passengers beginning to disembark for a day of tours and sightseeing on the island. The ship is reportedly sold out with more than 3,600 passengers aboard for a special charter rock music cruise.
Around 11:00 a.m. local time the weather increased and videos showed the ship rocking back and forth along the pier. Later pictures show scrapes and dents to the hull above the waterline where the cruise ship made contact with the dock. Another picture shows a crack in the concrete on the pier, although it is unclear if it was caused by the cruise ship.
“For safety reasons, the ship had to sail out to sea,” the captain wrote to the passengers. The decision was to move the ship to an alternate pier, but it was occupied by the Costa Pacifica cruise ship, so the Carnival Magic remained offshore. Carnival passengers coming back to the dock were surprised to find their ship out to sea.
Carnival reports its shore team was making arrangements for passengers stuck onshore, but people were complaining on social media there were hundreds of people with little space and shelter from the rainstorms. Finally, in the evening, Carnival bused the passengers to a new pier to rejoin the cruise ship.
The weather has been playing havoc on the cruise ships as a strong weather front moved across the Western Caribbean. The Carnival Magic had skipped a prior stop in Bimini the Miami Herald reports. Yesterday, three other cruise ships, the Carnival Dream, Norwegian Breakaway, and Regal Princess, were unable to dock in Cozumel, Mexico because of similar high surf and wind conditions.
Carnival Cruise Line reported the Carnival Magic would remain in Jamaica till 5:00 p.m. Wednesday, skipping a planned port call in Grand Cayman. The captain blamed the cancelation of Grand Cayman also on the weather, although the Carnival Magic was still undergoing inspections before it was cleared to depart to return to PortMiami. The ship had sailed from Florida on February 4 on the six-night cruise. The ship departed Jamaica as planned Wednesday afternoon with its AIS showing it is heading to Bimini before its return to Florida.