Cruise Ship Inquiry due to Electrical Fault off Irish Coast

Aug 16, 2016

Caribbean Princess Cruise Ship

Photo Credit: Yankeesman312 – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0,

Cruise Ship Inquiry due to Electrical Fault off Irish Coast

Bermuda has commenced an investigation into how the Caribbean Princess cruise ship lost power and drifted in the Irish Sea for nine hours with almost 4,500 people on board. The vessel has been en route from Cobh in Cork to Dublin as a part of a twelve day cruise from Southhampton in England.

The cruise ship is run by Princess Cruises, a US company, who stated that its fleet technical experts worked alongside the Captain and Chief Engineer on board, and restored propulsion just before 5pm.

The incident was initially treated as a potential security alert, due to fears of a terrorist incident at sea.

Luckily, the wind direction was in the vessel’s favour as an easterly wind could have caused the cruise ship to ground off the eastern coast of Ireland between Dublin and Wicklow.

The 290 metre cruise ship was forced to abandon a scheduled stop at Dublin Port after the incident occurred 25 miles south east of Dublin off the Wicklow coast on 3rd August 2016.

The 17 deck cruise ship eventually regained power and berthed in Belfast port in the early hours of 4th August.

The Bermudan Administration said it had continuously monitored the vessel’s situation and was in “constant communication” with the British Maritime and Coastguard Agency “from the time of its propulsion failure until the full propulsion power was restored and its voyage to Belfast completed”.

Captain Pat Nawaratne, Bermuda’s Chief Marine Surveyor, has confirmed that there was an electrical power failure to the propulsion motors, and the ship’s engineers and electrical offers were “in the process of evaluating the causes leading to the propulsion failure, using both onboard and shore facilities. Once we have received their findings we will be in a position to complete our investigation and publish the outcome accordingly,”

The Caribbean Princess has previously berthed in Irish ports, including Dublin Port last year, and is scheduled to make 10 visits to Cobh this year.


Clodagh Magennis

Clodagh Magennis

Head of Client Services

(01) 531 3800
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