Seatrade Cruise News is part of the Informa Markets Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Fred Olsen passengers flown back to UK after Black Watch fire curtails cruise

Fred Olsen passengers flown back to UK after Black Watch fire curtails cruise
Three private charter aircraft carrying most of the 696 guests who were onboard Fred Olsen Cruise Lines' Black Watch when a fire broke out in the auxiliary engine room last Friday, landed in the UK Monday having taken off from Funchal.

The fire, which broke out while the ship was 260 natical miles from Madiera, was quickly extinguished by the crew and there were no injuries to guests or crew.

The fire damaged three of the ship’s seven auxiliary engines, which generate electrical power on board.  There was also cabling damage. Around noon on Sunday the compnay reported that lighting was limited around the ship, but it was able to provide as many hotel services as possible, including hot food and sanitation.

Following a full assessment of the extent of the damage, Fred Olsen decided on Sunday afternoon that the necessary repairs to the cabling would cause significant disruption to guests and made the decision to fly the guests, mostly British, home from Funchal, at the company's expense.

Special arrangements were made for those guests who are unable to fly back to the UK for medical reasons.

Fred. Olsen is arranging a full refund of the whole cruise fare for ecah passenger and refunding any reasonable out of pocket expenses connected with the curtailment of their holidays.
In addition, Fred. Olsen will also offer guests a future cruise voucher of up to 50% of the fare paid for this cruise, to be used within Fred. Olsen’s current cruise programme.

Fred. Olsen Cruise Lines says Black Watch's next scheduled cruise to Norway due to depart Tilbury on July 8 has been cancelled. 

A compnay spokesperson told Seatrade Cruuise News it is assessing the full impacts of the incident, and an exact time frame for the repairs is not yet known. It is intended that the ship will sail from Funchal in order to be able to undertake the full repairs necessary, but a location has yet to be confirmed.