A cruise ship from Florida crashed straight into a dock on the island nation of Jamaica. Crazy things always happen on cruise ships, this time it resulted in extensive property damage. The ship in question, Harmony of the Seas, is a Florida-based ship that belongs to the Royal Caribbean line. Meanwhile, other Florida-based cruise ships also faced some tribulations, here’s what you should know. 

What Happens When the Third-Largest Cruise Ship in the World Crashes?

After departing from Port Canaveral the ship sailed through the Bahamas eventually making its way to Jamaica. The ship left Port Canaveral on a Sunday and all seemed to be well until it wound up crashing into a dock in Jamaica. 

When compared to other cruise ships, Harmony of the Seas isn’t a vessel of average size. In fact, it’s the third-largest cruise ship on the planet. Imagine watching the third-largest ship in the world crashing into a dock! On Thursday, the 27th of May, 2022, that’s exactly what happened. 

While significant, as far as maritime disasters go, the incident is far from the worst. In 1628, the Swedish warship, the Vasa sank on its maiden voyage. Vasa was one of the longest wooden ships ever constructed. The vessel was so large, and the hull so overladen, it sunk just a few feet away from the dock. Unlike the grandiose Swedish warship from the annals of history, Harmony of the Seas, a modern cruise ship did not sink. 

No Harm No Foul

Harmony of the Seas is so massive, it takes a crew of 2,200 souls to maintain it. The vessel had over 5,000 passengers on board when crashing into the Jamaican dock last Thursday. Upon inspection, Harmony of the Seas was found fit to set sail as scheduled without interruption. 

There were no casualties or fatalities, making it one of the most painless incidents in maritime history. With only some minor damage to the stern, the ship is expected to continue to make its way back to the shores of Florida to return its passengers to Port Canaveral on time.

In that no passengers or crew members were injured in the crash, it’s safe to say that no harm was done, except of course to the dock that they rammed into. The ship was quickly repaired before preparing for departure on its journey home to Florida. 

Meanwhile, Another Cruise Ship Caught on Fire

If the people aboard Harmony of the Seas thought they had it rough after crashing into a dock while making port, the folks on Carnival cruise ship, Carnival Freedom had it much worse as the ship caught on fire with nearly 3,000 people on board!

With a tonnage of 110,000, a crew of over 1,000 souls, and the capacity to house just under 3,000 passengers, Carnival Freedom is a vessel of substantial size. 

After docking in Grand Turk, a fire started in the ship’s funnel. There’s nothing more frightening than being stuck on a burning ship. Fortunately, the crew’s response to the incident was both prompt and effective as passengers were told to get to their muster stations while the fire was being extinguished. 

The crew successfully subdued the fire before it could cause any major damage or injuries, or fatalities. After the fire was extinguished, passengers were able to depart from the ship as scheduled to enjoy the pleasures of Grand Turk. 

Carnival Freedom has been sailing the seas since 2007 giving people a way to relax and unwind in style. The fire that started on the vessel made the situation look worse than it was. Although all fires are serious, especially when there’s a fire on a ship full of people, the passengers can thank the crew for handling it so quickly and magnificently. 

The fire started in the ship’s funnel, one of the most visually prominent features of the ship. The ship’s funnel looks like a massive smokestack or a rounded chimney, which is somewhat accurate as it’s designed to carry emissions up and away from the ship and its passengers. 

While no one was hurt, this fire easily could have gotten out of hand. If the fire had been more serious or if the crews’ response to it had been subpar, it could have caused fatalities in addition to extensive damage to the ship itself. 

Mysteriously, the cause of the fire is unknown and under investigation. It’s unclear whether the fire was started by someone on purpose or if it was the unhappy result of some natural malfunction. 

Thanks to the crew, Carnival was able to maintain its spotless record for never having one of its own ships actually sink. While there have been some close calls, no ship has ever sunk under Carnival’s care. 

Royal Caribbean Ship Faces Adversity Regarding COVID-19 Policy

It’s been a dramatic past few days for Florida-based cruise ships as another Royal Caribbean ship is facing difficulties with COVID-19 legislation. After being given the green light by the CDC to set sail, Florida legislation impeded the voyage. 

Celebrity Edge, the vessel in question, is owned by Royal Caribbean and has been out of commission for nearly a year due to COVID-19 restrictions. The owners of Celebrity Edge made an effort to meet the CDC’s standards and bring the ship up to code in terms of COVID guidelines. After requiring passengers to provide valid vaccination passports and refitting the ship with a fully vaccinated crew, Celebrity Edge was unable to set sail because the new policy violated Florida law. 

Governor Ron DeSantis banned vaccine passports somewhat recently, an act that essentially put the ship’s policy at odds with the law. Under Florida law, businesses in the state are prohibited from insisting on having customers present proof of vaccination. 

Now that the ship has been stopped from setting sail because of its policy on COVID-19, a debate has been sparked. This debate will offer people throughout Florida and beyond plenty of food for thought as they revisit the battle between privacy versus public health and safety. 

It’s been an eventful past few days for Florida-based cruise ships. As always, SFL Media will continue to keep you posted on any important updates.