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Articles from 2001 In April


NTSB: welding ignited lint, sparking Ecstasy fire

NTSB: welding ignited lint, sparking Ecstasy fire

Contributing to the extensive fire damage was the lack of an automatic fire suppression system on the aft mooring deck and the lack of an automatic means of mitigating the spread of smoke and fire through the ventilation ducts, the NTSB said. The fire broke out just as Ecstasy sailed from Miami on the afternoon of July 20, 1998, drawing unprecedented media coverage. Fourteen crewmembers and eight passengers suffered minor injuries. Losses from the fire and associated damages exceeded $17m.

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The NTSBapos;s recommendations

The NTSBapos;s recommendations

The NTSB says Carnival should revise its safety management system to include processes for preventing unauthorised flame cutting and other activities that could spark a fire, and the line should develop plans to account for passengers and crew in common emergency scenarios (particularly a situation involving the inaccessibility of one or more main vertical zones). The NTSB further recommends that Carnival and other lines with mooring deck designs similar to Ecstasy's install fire detection and suppression systems on the decks, and those with similar ventilation systems should install an automatic method of mitigating the spread of smoke and fire from laundry spaces. The board directs Asea Brown Boveri Marine Group to advise customers owning the same propulsion design as the Ecstasy of the potential for system failure from the loss of auxiliary voltage to the high-speed breakers and to offer design changes minimising these effects. Finally, the NTSB suggests the International Association of Classification Societies advise members to require systems designers, manufacturers, and/or shipyards to perform and submit qualitative failure analyses to ensure the fail-safe operation of propulsion systems on new passenger ships.

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No plans to merge RCI, Celebrity

No plans to merge RCI, Celebrity

Nothing more,' a Royal Caribbean spokesman tells Seatrade Insider.

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Renaissance unveils Internet plan

Renaissance unveils Internet plan

The 'Stay Connected' package offers passengers the option of purchasing unlimited Internet access at a set price for their entire cruise vacation. The cost is per stateroom based on cruise length: 10 days - $99.99; 12 days - $129.99; 15 days - $159.99.

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Wind Surf to sail from Port Everglades

Wind Surf to sail from Port Everglades

'It's been over a decade since one of the Windstar ships has sailed from mainland USA. We are planning a big celebration for her arrival including tours for our travel agent partners and loyal guests,' says Tom Russell, vp of marketing and sales. Wind Surf will offer 10 departures of a new seven-day cruise that visits Salt Cay, Green Turtle Cay, Half Moon Cay (HAL's private island) and Bimini, all in the Bahamas, plus a call at Key West.

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Princess touts early embarkation

Princess touts early embarkation

Beginning across the fleet in May, passengers who opt for Express Check-In willreceive a sticker on their cruise tickets designating that theirpaperwork is completed. They will simply sign their cash-freesignature card before boarding the ship. Whether passengers choose Express Check-In or not, all may board directly after check-in, which typically begins at noon.

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NCL will convert to Fidelio

NCL will convert to Fidelio

Passengers will use a magnetic stripe card for on-board purchases and gangway security. Crew will also use the card at the gangway. On Norwegian Sky and future new ships, the Fidelio card will double as a room key for both guests and staff. The conversion begins in June on Norwegian Wind, and the rest of the fleet will adopt the technology by early 2002. Fidelio currently supports 91 vessels from 31 cruise lines including NCL's parent, Star.

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Grand sister Golden Princess delivered

Grand sister Golden Princess delivered

At the handover ceremony the following day, Peter Ratcliffe paid tribute to the 'reliability, quality and design flair' that made Fincantieri 'the leading cruiseship builder in the world' (31% of the world market by workload, according to the yard - see following story). The 109,000gt Golden Princess is Fincantieri's eighth cruiseship newbuild for the P&O group in just over 10 years and a further two sisterships are on order, representing a total $3.5bn investment: an option for a fifth Grand-class vessel has yet to be confirmed. The Grand itself had proved 'an absolute sensation' when first introduced in 1998 and Princess continued to enjoy a 'a halo effect,' said Ratcliffe. Golden Princess will spend the summer in the Med, before her christening (by actress Jane Seymour) in Ft Lauderdale this October. The ship will be the first in the Princess fleet to be installed with an AOL Internet Cafe, open 24 hours a day with 25 computer stations; other vessels, including the Grand, will be retrofitted with AOL facilities before year end.

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Olympic Explorer delivery delayed

Olympic Explorer delivery delayed

However the event didn't take place as ROC has requested that, 'a number of improvements be made' to the new vessel, prior to taking final delivery.Olympic Explorer's inaugural cruise was due to start on May 12 from Piraeus to Venice and thereafter the vessel was scheduled to operate 7 day itineraries from the Italian port. The company is understood to be making adjustments to the vessel's early voyages and is in contact with clients and agents informing them of possible variations to schedules and alternative options. However Seatrade Insider understands there is no alternative ROC ship available for the inaugural dates. The first in series 24,500gt cruiseship built by B+V for ROC last year Olympic Voyager, is scheduled for her annual drydocking at that time.

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Infinity arrives on West Coast

Infinity arrives on West Coast

The 1,950-passenger vessel is sister to last year's Millennium. As earlier reported, Infinity's innovations include a full conservatory created by Paris-based floral designer Emilio Robba and a specialty restaurant themed on the 1952 liner United States. Eighty percent of the staterooms are ocean-view, and 74% come with verandas.

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