Talk about double indemnity, after being pummeled and ravaged in a violent Caribbean storm—which caused damage to ship and passengers—Royal Caribbean’s Anthem of the Seas was forced this weekend (Feb. 27) to abort a cruise and turn back because of a severe storm forecast. The ship had sailed into an Atlantic storm earlier this month, while passengers were sent to the safety of their cabins where they remained for 12 hours while the behemoth vessel was battered by high waves and 125-mph winds off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. What are the odds? In a stranger twist some of the passengers on board the current voyage are experiencing norovirus-like symptoms.
So Royal Caribbean posted on Twitter on Saturday Feb. 27 that the ship would return to port in Bayonne, New Jersey. “Captain followed our new storm avoidance policy and consulted with experts,” said another tweet posted Monday morning. The captain was severely criticized for not heeding storm warnings before the last incident occurred on Feb. 8. On Feb. 9, USA Today reported that the 168,666-ton vessel should not have sailed southward from New York into the path of the growing weather system, which eventually packed winds of up to 100 mph and created waves higher than 20 to 30 feet, according to WeatherBell meteorologist Ryan Maue.” The risk was easily avoidable as the storm was well-forecast by private and public forecasting outfits,” Maue said.
And to add insult to injury CNN’s coverage of the recent incident says that Royal Caribbean has reported that about 10 passengers per day of the 6,000 on the current voyage are experiencing norovirus symptoms. The gastrointestinal illness “didn’t affect decision to return,” according to a cruise line tweet.