Carnival Splendor Cruise Ship Disabled After Engine Room Fire

A fire broke out this morning in the engine room on the Carnival Splendor during a cruise to the Mexican Riviera (Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo San Lucas.)  Passengers were told to move from their cabins to the Lido Deck on the upper level. 

The fire burned from around 6:00 a.m. until it was extinguished around 9 a.m. according to several news sources.  However, the fire erupted again according to U.S. Coast Guard spokesman Kevin Metcalf. 

Carnival Splendor Cruise Ship Fire The Press-Telegram reports that two guests and a crew member suffered panic attacks, but no one was physically injured. 

The cruise ship had left the Port of Long Beach on Sunday with 3,299 guests and 1,167 crew members.

The cruise ship is dead in the water.  There are reports that there is only an emergency generator running, which means no air conditioning or working toilets. 

The cruise ship is approximately 55 miles west of Punta San Jacinto, which is about 150 miles south of San Diego, and will have to be towed back to a port by tugs. 

We have written about cruise ship fires many times.  Carnival and its subsidiary Princess Cruises have a long history of cruise ship fires   Consider reading  Ten Years of Cruise Ship Fires - Has the Cruise Industry Learned Anything?

The Splendor is the Carnival cruise ship which Senior Cruise Director John Heald is currently on.  Cruise Director Heald writes an excellent blog called the John Heald Blog.  He wrote a timely and sensitive blog last month when a Carnival crew member tragically committed suicide.  Will he write an informative blog about this latest incident on the Splendor?  

The official statement from Carnival is pretty skimpy, as usual. 

The engines were manufactured by Wartsila.  The Splendor is diesel-electric powered using six Wartsila diesel engines and has a power output of 63,400kW.  I have made an inquiry to Wartsila but I have not received a response.

Were you a passenger or crew member on the cruise ship?  Do you have photos or video to share?  Please leave a comment below.

 

 

Articles of interest:

Disabled Carnival Ship Shows How Vulnerable Mega-Vessels Can Be

Carnival Cruise Ship Still Out At Sea, Conditions Onboard 'Challenging'

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Comments (11) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
Bobbie Crowder - November 9, 2010 8:15 AM

How sad I feel for the passengers and the crew members. My family took a cruise on the this ship September 19th. It was wonderful. The ship is a very beautiful ship. I hope it can be repaired.

Clark E. Dodge - November 9, 2010 3:38 PM

I have been reading about the Engine room fire with great interest as the retired senior Staff Chief Engineer and a member of the design steering committee, we spent many hours designing features to prevent the DIW conditions as well as cross-connects and engine room and switchboard layouts. We could operate the drives from the bridge, control room, switchboard rooms and even in the motor rooms. We could run all major systems from the engine room, (s) with multiple power sources and the pumps and A/C systems were zones to allow for many options. I can’t imagine that a huge cruise ship would not take such actions.

I think they need a steering committee like ours. You did not say who the controls system providers were but when the bids were in we chose Siemens and EMD engines.

I have been in investigations in the past as well as being a former elected official so I never want to point fingers but rather work to prevent reoccurring events. When we don’t learn from past mistakes, shame on us. Passenger safety should always be number one.

alyssa jimenez - November 10, 2010 3:12 PM

I WENT ON MY FIRST CRUISE ON THIS SHIP FROM OCT 17TH-24TH OF THIS YEAR WHICH WAS ONLY ABOUT 3 WEEKS AGO, THATS SO SCARY..I WILL DEFINITELY BE GOING ON FUTURE CRUISES BUT I FEEL VERY SORRY FOR THE GUESTS THAT DIDN'T GET TO ENJOY IT. JOHN HEALD IS SO GREAT AND VERY FUNNY WE ACTUALLY DRESSED UP IN OUR COSTUMES THE WEEK BEFORE HALLOWEEN JUST FOR THE FUN OF IT..

Ms. Muffett - November 10, 2010 3:54 PM

Cruise critic member AZ reported it as cruise from hell.heads stopped up, smells, people hoarding food, having to sleep on deck. Carnival reports calm seas but when you look at https://www.fnmoc.navy.mil/wxmap_cgi/cgi-bin/wxmap_single.cgi?area=ngp_namer&dtg=2010111012&prod=wav&tau=030&set=Core
(click yes) you see quite another story. its typical 8 ft for this time of year. I wonder how many are sea sick??? and its cold this time of year. going north is going uphill and right into it. I know I am an old... san diego singlehander. you can see actual movement at marinetraffic.com. earlier was law enforcement vessel alongside. (uscg)

Ms. Muffett - November 11, 2010 12:40 PM

as just as predicted in 8-9 ft seas. USA today reports
"The passengers who called to shore on Wednesday reported that the ship was rolling with the waves more than usual, leading some passengers to get sick."

Ms. Muffett - November 11, 2010 1:08 PM

ah the joys of 8-9 ft seas without stablizers.
" Passenger Lenora Chavez told CNN, "some of the plumbing was at capacity and vomit bags were hanging in corridors."

"It smells like a lot of people are throwing up," she said. "I can smell that a lot."

Phil - November 12, 2010 6:57 AM

Clark, interesting comment. When I took a cruise on the NCL Norwegian Gem last year I figured that they could lose two of their five diesels and still make 23 knots; that made me feel fairly safe in mid-ocean. Now I see my assumption that failures would be independent is not necessarily valid. I am going to be very interested in the NTSB report when it comes out; it's hard to understand how a ship with six separate engine/generators could be completely knocked out by a single engine failure, even if it did result in a fire.

Domnic - November 13, 2010 9:34 PM

Would be interesting/informtive to know what caused the fire in the first place. That, only the ship's saff will be able to say better than anybody...

Fahizah alim - November 17, 2010 1:56 AM

I was stranded on the disabled ship and I have all of the same questions that this article poses. Why did all six engine and how safe are these large luxury liners? Is it safer to sail on smaller ships?

Mike E - November 18, 2010 1:27 PM

Can anyone say EMP?...the only way I could see ALL the power going out on a ship that size would be due to an EMP. Which also coincides with this report http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/11/14/BAS11GC2I0.DTL&type=science where tens of thousands of jellyfish are washing up dead on the shores of southern California just days later.
Makes you wonder what really happened to that ship...

durand - March 18, 2013 2:21 AM

Do you why WARTSILA starts to be involved in this matter whereas it has never the case?
Because this company has now a clear strategy such as a trader where quality, serious, competence have been lost in offering to the god of MONEY.
Just as much money as possible in the shorter time.
It's a shame, they were N°1 in marine diesel engines for a good reason...

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