Cruise expert Professor Ross Klein's website cruisejunkie.com contains interesting comments from a passenger from the Carnival Triumph regarding what some thought was a man overboard situation.
The passenger commented that on February 6th, while the cruise ship was docked in Progresso, Mexico, the cruise ship's PA speaker blared “Bravo,Bravo Starboard.” A lifeboat was lowered to the water and 5 - 10 minutes later, retrieved what the passenger thought was a body in the water. The passenger took a photo of the "body," which you can see was wearing a life vest.
Another person commented that this was apparently a drill involving a rescue dummy. If you look closely at the enlarged photo you can see that this is not a real person - although it may have appeared to be from a far distance.
Nothing apparently was told to the passengers either before or after the exercise. It seems strange to perform a rescue operation like this without notifying the passengers. It's a good way to unnecessarily alarm them during what should be a relaxing cruise.
It made me wonder how often these type of drills are performed. Are they "surprise" drills, made without any advance notice to the crew to see how they perform? Are announcements made to the passengers? Does anyone have information about these type of drills?
Story/Photo Credit: Professor Ross Klein / CruiseJunkie