Rhapsody of the SeasLast night / early this morning around 4:A.M – 4:30 A.M., a wave struck the Rhapsody of the Seas, breaking the windows of five passenger cabins on deck three, injuring cruise passengers and partially flooding the cabins on deck three and also on deck two. 

One passenger, Kerry Boyd, tweeted; "Woke up at 4:30 am on our cruise first night when 5 windows on our floor burst open flooding the floor with sea water. All well, but tired"  She tweeted that 60 cabins were flooded.

Another passenger, Todd Scuderi, tweeted a series of three tweets publicly about the incident. 

"I’m on Rhapsody of the Seas. Last night 4am wave hit ship and knocked out my window and 4 others on deck 3. lucky we weren’t swept out.

(2) ceilings and walls collapsed. We were all bleeding and hallway was flooded. Royal Caribbean has not handled this well.

(3) ship staying in Corsica till 12am to "fix it" This was only night 1 of 9 nights."

The Rhapsody will have its broken cabin windows replaced in Corsica.

Please contact us if you are a crew member or other passengers with additional information. 

Photo Credit: Benyoch CC BY-SA 3.0 commons / wikimedia

Have a thought?  Please join the discussion on our Facebook page

April 26 2016 Update: a comment left on our Facebook page: 

"Freak wave hitting Rhapsody o.t.Seas… Ron & my Cabin Windows scattered, hughe wave crushing in at 4am/25th April, while we were asleep. Cabin totally flooded, we were covered in Blood, Seawater, scattered glass, ceiling panels, insulation, metall racks and debris, which used to be cabin interior. Partition Walls caved in, Doors crushed and bent, stuck in the frame with passengers trapped inside.

So far we are ok, bruises and cuts taken care off, most luggage, clothes rescued, but missing Glasses, Medication, Mobile Phone…probably at the bottom of the ocean.
Our "well being" mentally wise is not really ‘back to normal"…. we are very much shaken up.
Very, very poor Handling of us Survivors by Company…. took 7 hours to get one person saying "i will take care of you"….and 15hours for the Captain to talk to us…!!!!"

From another passenger on our Facebook page:

"We were disembarked from this ship yesterday along with 50 other passengers. Some are lucky to be alive after their windows cracked, sea water poured in & they were trapped in their cabins.

The Captain made an announcement & said that the ship had been caught between 2 large swells which caused the ship to flex & popped the Windows. We have just landed at Heathrow. Came via Orly & now have to get to Gatwick to collect our car. R Carribbean v unsympathetic & some passengers were injured & very shaken."

Statement by Royal Caribbean:

The cruise line issued the following statement, which is posted on the Cruise Hive site.

"On Monday, April 25, while sailing to Ajaccio, Corsica, Rhapsody of the Seas encountered inclement weather. Five stateroom windows on the third deck were broken, resulting in water incursion. Six rooms were damaged, and carpeting in some nearby hallways and staterooms on deck three was soaked by water. No serious injuries were reported. The windows were replaced and the ship resumed her itinerary.

Because of the soaked flooring, which could not be immediately replaced without causing great inconvenience, 45 guests were relocated to other staterooms, and 44 departed the ship in Corsica. We have compensated all the affected guests with a full refund and future cruise certificate in the total amount of the cruise fare they paid for their sailing, as well as handling accommodations and travel costs for those who left the ship."

A newspaper in New Zealand is the latest to report on the fiasco.

May 10 2016 Update:  Rusted Window Frames on the Rhapsody of the Seas? and Photos on Facebook.

  • Henrik

    So what is it Royal Caribbean has not handled well?

  • Dianna Tebbe

    Do you know which cabins lost their windows? I will be on deck 3 of the Rhapsody soon enough that I am concerned about mold & mildew with my respiratory allergies always being a concern. I also wonder how long it will take to repair rooms with more damage than soggy carpet. Just how far beyond the cabins with broken windows did the water get?

  • sarah mcgregor

    bet it wasnt as bad as someone said.. stuff missing .. the ship wasnt sinking i gather..bit dramatic id say..looking for attention perhaps..
    Ive been on that ship and theyve always been attentive to their passengers..

  • Richy

    The statement by RC fails to acknowledge the cuts, bruising and trauma of the affected passengers but manages to mention the damaged carpets?
    I Hope the carpets and are ok now (sarcastic tone)

  • TP

    I am cruising on Rhapsody right now. Incident occurred on my deck. Cabins damaged are on Deck 3 forward, port side (front of the ship, left side). I am on same side but back of the ship. All I can see is carpet has been ripped out of hallway in that area. Other than that all is normal in cruise. Very nice cruise, staff and food has been superb so far!

  • TP

    Cabins 3060, 3062, 3064, 3066 and 3068 were the ones that lost their windows.

  • george

    Please do not think these folks in these 5 rooms did not suffer and are not still suffering. I hope this sort of thing never happens to you or anyone else. I know 2 affected by this. It is not about attention seeking. It is about how they feared for their lives. I’ve seen photos. I get it.

    Regardless of how you would respond if a huge wave broke through your cabin window at 4am and the roof fell down and trapped you and you have cuts that look like they should be stitched and bruised and sore and traumatized, please do not judge how someone else may react to what was felt as life threatening. In return I will not think of you as cold and uncaring.

  • Frank Salerno


  • George:

    Perhaps you should have the photos published here or some where else on social media.

    The cruise line will sweep the incident and the considerable damage under the carpet. But a photo is worth a thousand words . . .


  • george

    I will only add photos with their permission. This is not my place to do so. But I do thank you Jim, because this is the only place we found info about things in between getting tiny bits of info from our loved ones. It is here that I keep checking back just to see if anything new has come up.

    I’m shocked about what makes it into the news and what does not. However at this point, I am grateful it’s not all over the news so the young children who’s parent is on vacation are not seeing it and getting scared.

    We will all be glad when they get home and can get some help and rest.

  • George:

    Perhaps you can speak to those affected who have photos. We will be pleased to post them here and on our Facebook page.

    Five cabins windows blown out plus structural damage and tens of passengers flooded out yet not a single photo published in a blog or on Facebook or Twitter is like a dream-come-true for Royal Caribbean . . .

    Regards Jim

  • TP

    Today another passenger said water got to the engines and started flooding deck 3 hallway. Flooding was reported, but crew assured everything was ok. Later, pressure made the windows pop from the inside out, reason why passengers in those cabins thought they were going to be sucked out of their rooms. I don´t know if this is what really happened. I guess we will never know. Hallway carpet has been replaced. 24 hour security in the area. Passengers are not allowed in this section of the hallway.

  • G A

    I was on this cruise, love the water, but glad to have my life. After a dozen cruises I never thought I would have to be concerned about the integrity of a window…or 5 windows. This region is notoriously windy and I’ve even missed a tendered port nearby because of the winds. I was on the 3rd floor opposite side, and the ship was hitting those waves hard. He never let up from doing 20 knots. I turned the flat screen on during the night having difficulty sleeping, 1am, 2am, etc., and you could see waves blow over the bow, every 15 seconds or so. This wasn’t a hurricane but he should have slowed down, I thought, like a similar cruise I was on crossing the Tasman Sea, or cut the waves at an angle, not parallel. That ship was rockin’. The captain never addressed the incident again after the 5am announcement. The ship slowed after the incident and it was much smoother. No update on the medical condition of those affected. Really cold. No communication from RC and during a prearranged captains talk at the theater, he refused to talk because someone was filming. He got real defensive and commented that someone wanted to post the video on youtube. He said cruisers were given notice of high winds when we left barcelona and there was nothing that should have prevented the ship from leaving. He showed up 10 minutes late eating an ice cream cone. Arrogant, talks in third person when addressing cruisers. There was a bit of coddling after more serious questions went unanswered. I went back to my room and found a screw missing from the frame that holds the window in, yikes. I called and they replaced the screw with a non-OEM screw, obviously no supply onboard. Yeah I got pictures and you better believe that freak wave story is more Hollywood than fact. Our window frames were rusted and water came in even when workers were cleaning the windows. Pathetic preventative maintenance. At the 3rd floor, we were well above the water line but you could clearly see corrosion in the welds which needs to be repaired, not painted over. For a ship built in 1997, that’s pretty darn pathetic.

  • Ronel Crous

    Good day.
    We will be leaving SA for our cruise with Rhapsody of the seas on 13 May 2016 from Venice.

    Please can you kindly inform us if all is in order with this ship after the badly wave that hit it?

    Ronel Crous

  • Marty Atwater

    I was on deck 3 of the Rhapsody when the storm hit and 5 windows were broken in. The ship’s crew need to be commended for the way they handled this unprecedented situation. We were told to go to the Centrum, and they were very attentive to us, handing out blankets and coffee. They had officers there to answer our questions and to help us through the crisis. We were lucky because our cabin was not as wet as many others, and we could go back in after 12 hours. They worked hard to dry the cabin out. Miraculously, the cruise went on mostly as usual from there on. While there was real damage in the hallway, they worked tirelessly 24 hours a day to repair and replace. Even though we were very near, we rarely heard any noise. The compensation package we received was quite fair. We will certainly continue to cruise with RC.

  • G A

    After replacing the windows in Ajaccio on Monday, 4/25/16, we had a day at sea, 4/26, and then arrived in Naples on 4/27.

    The attached is from late in the evening shortly before departure at Naples and adjacent to the gangway. The barnacle laden Rhapsody of Seas could only muster pool towels (for one window) in a makeshift effort to conceal interior damage. I could have did a better job with a sheet and some duct tape. The stickers on the new windows remained throughout the cruise, perhaps so they could remember which ones were replaced (one sticker #8011 does say FBN2 RECHANGE)? Where is my formal apology or contact from Royal? Instead, I get the typical end of cruise speech warning about a “Guest Satisfaction Survey” that “you will have one week to complete the survey” or else we don’t care if your trip was lousy. Why didn’t corporate legal counsel get on this right away? By Saturday, 4/30/16, day at sea, I expected to hear something from corporate during the 1:00 pm Captain’s Corner with Captain Dimas Manrigue, 5 days after the incident. Instead, he joked that he still had a job. This is not becoming of someone who is supposed to gain my confidence. Unimpressed with the company which decided to “lawyer up” and not answer a single question, I figured something else is going on and went back to look at my own windows starboard side.

    Sure, my room wasn’t soaked and I didn’t get hit with a glass windows or suffer a near drowning. However, I certainly won’t get an inside oceanview and my well-being about the safety of cruising, especially with Royal Caribbean was affected. I always thought they were slightly better than several other lines, building the largest ships. Wrong!

    Attached is the captain’s corner…awaiting for him to arrive, 1:07, the cruise director apologized that the captain has more important issues, and we should understand. The captain shows up with an ice cream cone and said that’s what he was doing. The captain should have been cruise director, he was always laughing at his jokes.

    As I said, I returned to my room, to find a screw missing, see attached, then noticed rust and leaking window, and then noticed the black glazing/silicon was still moist. Also, you’ll notice the frame was replaced without inserting a screw, causing the silicon to press through the open hole. I immediately called maintenance who later came back to insert a non-OEM screw, obviously not the right screw. Should have been a countersunk screw, not a flat-head. Sure, it will work for Royal.

  • David Eastaff

    Although on the 7th deck we were suddenly woken by the ship keeling over and remaining in that position for 10 to 15 minutes. The shower floor and also the cabin floor were covered with broken glasses. There was certainly a fierce storm as lightning lit up the cabin. We heard nothing about what had happened on deck 3. No explanation was given by the captain. Corsica has been mentioned in some of the messages but we never stopped there. The first stop was Corfu. This is not a cruise line that I would recommend as the meals were not up to the usual standard and noise permeated the whole ship. Music was forever present in all the public spaces. No one suggested compensation for a frightening cruise!