MOBILE, Ala. – The disabled Carnival cruise ship Triumph is expected to reach port between 9:30 and 10:30 p.m. Central time Thursday night, a Carnival spokesman told an evening news briefing, but it could take up to five hours for everyone to disembark.
More than 4,000 people are aboard the ship, which has been without power for days after an engine fire. Only one elevator is working. Toilets are overflowing and food is scarce, passengers have told relatives and reporters by cellphone.
Buses will be standing by to take passengers to Galveston, Texas, or to hotels, the Carnival spokesman said, and members of the crew can either stay aboard or go to hotels. The repair assessment will begin Friday.
The ship's trek to shore was delayed earlier in the day when towing equipment broke and, later, a tow line snapped.
A Carnival spokesman told the Los Angeles Times there had been no deaths or serious injuries aboard the Triumph since it left Galveston last Thursday on what was supposed to be a four-day cruise to Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula. The ship lost power off the Yucatan coast Sunday after an engine fire.
The Triumph, carrying 3,143 passengers and 1,086 crew, was being towed into Mobile by four tugboats stationed around the ship until about 1 p.m. Thursday, when a tow gear on the lead tug boat broke. A fifth tug officials had kept on standby was attached to the Triumph with a tow line that broke shortly afterward.