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Has anyone else been following the Carnival cruise line

by Ziks511 / February 14, 2013 3:57 AM PST

debacle, and wondering why those poor people haven't been evacuated from the ship??

From day one, I was wondering why they didn't locate some spare carrying capacity and begin the transfer of people to functioning smaller ships. There are more than 3000 people and 1000 crew who have been living in absolute squalor for 5 days in what one doctor called "a floating petri dish" except that a petri dish doesn't constantly fill itself up with more sewage. The passengers I've heard have been quite laudatory about the crew, who they say work 24 hours a day trying to make things work or at least less bad. Hope they're all in line for massive bonuses, except for the Captain and the Engineers.

This whole thing sounds like a "least-cost" solution to a problem which should have been about saving the passengers from significant health risks, the Cruise Line's reputation and future business, and avoiding lawsuits from people whose health has been put at risk. I expect that it will cost far more to rehabilitate Carnival's reputation than a prompt evacuation would have cost. I'd look for a bankruptcy and corporate re-branding pretty soon, if only as protection from the lawsuits which are bound to result.

And the CEO was at a party two days ago. Now I grant that doesn't mean as much as it appears to mean, but it looks like he doesn't really care. The "optics" are bad .

Of course he's already got his money. If the Board fires him he'll get a Platinum-lined Diamond-encrusted parachute. He apparently feels he won't be held to account for this situation, in any meaningful way anyway.

High Corporate execs in the US are so insulated from the effects of their actions and inactions that they are divorced not just from their employees and clients, but from reality.

Toni keeps asking why rich people shouldn't keep all the money they make. This is the reason. So that they don't become a new aristocracy immune from accountability, and able should they feel so inclined to act irresponsibly, sure of their freedom from meaningful oversight and accountability. These guys are becoming, if they aren't already, above the law, and above civil actions because of their ability to buy the best defense money can procure.

This seems to me to be the failure of American business culture writ large. America used to be a nation which accomplished the impossible. Now it can't accomplish the merely necessary, minimal things to stay in business.


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Just the thought of being stuck on a ship
by JP Bill / February 14, 2013 3:59 AM PST

under those conditions is enough to make me never plan a cruise.

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The Carnival Triumph is to be renamed.
by Ziks511 / February 14, 2013 7:47 AM PST

The Horrific Debacle


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Didn't you just write this today in another post?
by Steven Haninger / February 14, 2013 9:18 AM PST
'Politics and International Relations don't really allow much room for morality or high minded principles..."

and now you're blaming business people for lack of good principles? If this needs to be corrected, who do you think should be taking the lead?
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This is not a comparable situation in my opinion.
by Ziks511 / February 14, 2013 9:23 PM PST

Business is predicated upon delivering goods or services in this case without putting the lives of the passengers in this case, at risk, and of generating a sense of care and competence and a pleasurable experience. That's their product, they are selling a good time. And if that is the business you are in, then everything hinges on delivering that experience. You fail in such a spectacular fashion broadcast over 5 days and how do you expect to stay in business.

Additionally, business is neither Politics nor International Relations despite requiring skills in both areas. Your competition are other businesses offering the same services and just waiting to expand at your expense. You can't afford to neglect the product you claim to deliver because there are thousands of others who will happily pick up the ball you've just dropped.


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For some reason
by James Denison / February 14, 2013 3:21 PM PST

it made me think of that boatload of Jews which weren't allowed to disembark in Cuba prior to WW2. Eventually they ended up back in Europe, just in time for WW2. Of course Carnival Cruise passengers only have to endure the conditions there for less than a week if I have the time linen correct. Pretty disgusting to read about. I was wondering why they didn't lower some of the lifeboats and let some crew or passengers try to catch some fish for food, or was the problem no cooking facilities working? Were all the stoves electric instead of propane or some hydrocarbon fuel? Maybe they will make a change in what type of food supplies they keep on hand, perhaps more canned and vacuum packed goods that would last a week during an event like this?

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I imagine that a sea rescue in those instances poses
by Steven Haninger / February 14, 2013 6:01 PM PST
In reply to: For some reason

more threat of harm to passengers than just toughing it out with a slow tow to shore. Can you imagine trying to get another ship up close and personal to that liner and transfer passengers of all shapes, sizes, ages and physical abilities? Can you imagine trying a helicopter rescue that far out? Didn't the early immigrants pay for their boat rides to the US without any guarantee of safety or lawyers to call if things didn't work out? Why do we always have to "get somebody" if we're not made happy with an experience we choose to embark on. Good grief, people. You're on a boat with water over your head. You also took a risk. Maybe people think they should only pay after the ship returns to shore and their experience was just as expected.

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have to disagree a bit Steve
by Roger NC / February 14, 2013 8:13 PM PST

I actually agree in general about over expectations in general and too quick to sue syndrome.

However, this is beyond just not satisfied with the experience. Would you think it was a risk you take if you were in a store shopping and the ceiling fell in on you?

Now I'm not advocating lawsuits here, they are over used. I got a spam text message on my phone the other day solicting people with side effects to some drug I never heard of to got to a web site for help in getting compensation.

IF this experience ends up being due to maintenance skipped, shortcuts taken, decisions contrary to established standards, or anything along those lines, then it becomes a question of who made the decision and are such actions encouraged by the management attitudes. I've seen safety talked in industry but when it came to equipment going down the expectations about "get it done" were obviously contrary to the vocal safety talk.

This should lead to review and attempts to plan for any future disable ships to be unloaded quicker. I agree transfer at sea would be too problematic. I haven't followed it close enough to know if there was a closer harbor somewhere, even without docking, that would have been large enough and quiet enough to anchor two ships and transfer passengers.

At least you would think there would be emergency provisions to use sea water and emergency toilets flushed straight to sea in such an extreme cases, more than just 23 bathrooms for over 3000 people as I heard reported available.

Don't forget Carnival is also the owner of that ship that went aground when the Captain took it too close to shore.

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My understanding is that.....
by Josh K / February 14, 2013 9:28 PM PST
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Courts have set aside signed waviers before
by Roger NC / February 15, 2013 7:33 AM PST

ruling that the events that occurred were not necessarily unavoidable or acts of God, but failure of someone to do what should have been done.

Signing a sheet that says you do something at your own risk doesn't mean the owner of property is totally excempted from responsibility.

I'm not advocating lawsuits necessarily, but there may be individuals, or groups, that bear responsibility for not doing what should have been done.

Wavier for ship breakdown even isn't necessarily ironclad, if there was a known problem that wasn't addressed properly before the ship sail for example.

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by Josh K / February 14, 2013 9:30 PM PST

.....Carnival is giving each passenger $500, plus a free ticket for another cruise, and paying all their expenses to get home from Alabama (the ship was supposed to dock in Houston). Accepting any of those things as compensation could make a subsequent lawsuit even more difficult.

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any time limit on the tickets?
by James Denison / February 14, 2013 11:27 PM PST
In reply to: Additionally....

From what I've heard of this company over the years, I'd expect those tickets to have less than a year's time limit on them, probably 3-6 months, and not everyone can take off on a cruise but once a year.

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and often comp tickets you have to be able to leave
by Roger NC / February 15, 2013 7:29 AM PST

on short notice, not necessarily plan months ahead.

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I was wondering why they didn't lower some of the lifeboats
by JP Bill / February 14, 2013 7:55 PM PST
In reply to: For some reason
I was wondering why they didn't lower some of the lifeboats and let some crew or passengers try to catch some fish for food,

There were 4,000 people on board...suppose they did catch 2 fish and they found 5 loaves of bread in the freezer...Who was the Captain?

The story I heard was that the people at the first of the food line were loading their plate like it was an all you could eat buffet....
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they should have rationed the food
by James Denison / February 14, 2013 11:28 PM PST

Not done a "buffet" style.

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Interesting this evening, while blasting Carnavel
by Roger NC / February 15, 2013 7:35 AM PST

management for the handling of the situation, some passengers are praising the crew for the way they did what they could and the crew's attitude of trying to help etc.

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This happened before, last year on Splendor
by James Denison / February 16, 2013 2:10 AM PST
Carnival Splendor

"01/14/2013 11:43:05 AM Tugboats bring the disabled cruise ship Carnival Splendor into
San Diego Bay on Nov. 11, 2010. The ship was recently damaged by fishing

The ship left Puerto Vallarta on Friday afternoon for the
roughly two-day trip back to Long Beach.

Due to the delay, passengers scheduled to leave Sunday on a
Mexican cruise had their departure put off by one day. Their cruise will
be shortened from six days to five, Gulliksen said. Passengers will
receive a one-day refund and were given a $50 credit. They were also
given the option of canceling without fees, Gulliksen said.

The Splendor, which has a capacity of 3,006 passengers, has
had some trouble in recent years. During a Mexican cruise in November
2010, the ship had a fire in its engine room, cutting electrical power.
Crews put out the fire, but the ship could not regain electricity and it
was towed to San Diego. "
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