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Another Costa cruise disaster...

Onboard fire cripples Costa cruise ship

Costa Allegra, with 636 passengers on board, stranded in Somali pirate waters

ROME ? A cruise liner owned by the same company as the Costa Concordia, which ran aground off Italy last month, is cloaked in darkness and adrift in the Indian Ocean on Monday after a fire in the engine room left it without power.

The fire on the Costa Allegra was quickly extinguished and "there were no injuries or casualties," said Costa Cruises in a statement. However, the ship is stranded about 200 miles southwest of the Seychelles, an area where Somali pirates have been active.

Costa Cruises, which is based in Genoa, Italy, said in a statement that its ship was about 20 miles from Alphonse Island, one of the atolls in the Seychelles, a nation of islands and atolls that is a popular tourist destination.

The general region where the cruise ship was adrift ? off the coast of Tanzania ? has seen a rash of attacks by Somali pirates, but they have never hijacked a cruise ship.

A Seychelles official said armed guards are on board the cruise ship. She said that is standard practice for cruise ships "these days."

"If pirates attack, the armed guards on board will respond. But as far as I am aware, no pirates have been sighted in the area," said Seychelles presidential spokeswoman Srdjana Janosevic.

The Costa Allegra has 636 passengers and 413 crew on board. Crew were working to "restore functionality" to the ship and tugs and other support vessels were on their way to offer assistance, Costa Cruises said.

The accident aboard the Costa Allegra occurred about six weeks after the Costa Concordia ran aground off the Italian island of Giglio on Jan. 13, killing at least 25 people. Seven passengers remain missing. The ship's captain was arrested and several other officials were placed under investigation.

On Monday, Italian coast guard officials dispatched cargo ships near the Costa Allegra to help. Tug boats from the island nation of Seychelles also were steaming to the powerless ship. But the tugs were not expected to reach it until Tuesday afternoon at the earliest, and a top Seychelles military official said he could not yet say when the cruise ship might be brought back to port.

The Seychelles coast guard and air wing mobilized, and an aircraft was flying over the ship late Monday evening, said Janosevic.

"And there are fishing vessels in the vicinity, large ones, that are going to provide support as well," Janosevic said. "They have assistance coming to them.'"

The Allegra had left northern Madagascar, off Africa's southeast coast, on Saturday and was cruising toward the port of Victoria, Seychelles' capital, when the fire erupted. Costa said the Allegra had been due in Victoria on Tuesday.

The Allegra was built in Italian shipyards in 1992, is 615-feet long, has eight passenger decks and 399 cabins.

Re: Another Costa cruise disaster...

  • That's awful. For some reason it still shocks me that pirates exist. 
    Love 9.3.03 Marriage 12.1.07 Baby Carriage 8.3.11
  • How incredibly scary for those passengers. I hope help comes soon and at least gets them out of there before the Somali pirates catch on and try to take over. I wonder how far from a shore they are and at one point they can use the lifeboats? Can you use lifeboats to escape possible pirates??

    Ashlee, I still think the same thing. I actually google imaged "somali pirates" while I was reading the article because I still think of like Captain Hook.

  • Also this is an ooooooold ship. It looks like it was built in 1969! Just for comparison, Carnival's oldest ship in service was built in 1990 and Royal Caribbean's was built in 1991.
  • image Lucille Bluth:
    Also this is an ooooooold ship. It looks like it was built in 1969! Just for comparison, Carnival's oldest ship in service was built in 1990 and Royal Caribbean's was built in 1991.
    The end of the article says 1992...
  • image PantsOffDanceOff:
    image Lucille Bluth:
    Also this is an ooooooold ship. It looks like it was built in 1969! Just for comparison, Carnival's oldest ship in service was built in 1990 and Royal Caribbean's was built in 1991.
    The end of the article says 1992...

    Originally built as a container ship in 1969 then dry docked from 1986 until 1991 when it was renovated and turned into a cruise ship.

    MS Allegra is a cruise ship owned by the Italy-based Costa Crociere and operated by Paquet Cruises, one of many subsidiaries owned by Costa's parent company, the Carnival Corporation. She was built in 1969 by the W?rtsil? Turku Shipyard in Turku, Finland as the container ship MS Annie Johnson for the Sweden-based Rederi AB Nordstjernan. In 1986 she was sold to Regency Cruises with the intention of being converted into a cruise ship under the name MS Regent Moon, but she was laid up instead. In 1988 she was sold to Compania Naviera Panalexandra and renamed MS Alexandra but continued laid up. In 1990 the ship was acquired by Costa Cruises and rebuilt into a cruise ship at the T. Mariotti shipyard in Genoa, Italy. She entered service as Costa Allegra in 1992.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MS_Allegra

    I seriously have so much time on my hands at work...

  • I just brought up the year because I was thinking about mainstream cruises in the US and how this could even happen. Makes sense if any of the wiring is original or even just replaced that a fire would be more likely than on something built 20 or 30 or 40 years later.
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