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ECSTASY breaks loose



 
 
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  #1  
Old February 12th, 2006, 04:20 PM posted to rec.travel.cruises
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Default ECSTASY breaks loose

PDF front page with Carnival Ecstasy picture
http://www.nola.com/news/t-p/pageone...21206A01ME.pdf

Cruise ship housing evacuees breaks loose
Ecstasy came to rest near the West Bank

Sunday, February 12, 2006
By Coleman Warner
and Walt Philbin
Staff writer

More than 1,000 New Orleans police officers, their families, and other city
workers using the Carnival ship Ecstasy for post-Katrina lodging faced a
harrowing early morning ride Saturday when the ship broke free of its
moorings at the Poland Avenue Wharf and spun out into the Mississippi River.

The 855-foot cruise ship narrowly avoided hitting a pair of Military Sea
Lift Command ships moored near the Ecstasy and, with quick help from a river
pilot and three tugs, came to rest about 6:15 a.m. about 300 feet from the
Algiers riverbank, just downriver from Algiers Point, authorities said.

The episode began about 5:35 a.m. when a large metal bollard holding some
tie-down lines at the old wharf broke off, starting a chain reaction of line
breaks, Coast Guard spokeswoman Lt. Emily Tharp said.

Pressure placed on lines by brisk winds as well as the dock's age may have
been factors in the accident, which remains under investigation, Tharp said.

No injuries were reported, but Ecstasy passengers described a frantic scene.

"Thank God there was no river traffic at that particular time because it
could have been really bad," said Michael Williams, 43, an environmental
specialist with the New Orleans Health Department aboard the ship.
"Everybody was just in amazement that something like this could happen."

A New Orleans police officer said he was jarred from sleep by a loud boom.

"The boat shook and I sat up and said, 'What is that?' Then I heard another
loud boom and it shook again," the officer said, adding that he heard
another boom as he hurriedly dressed. The officer asked to remain anonymous
because Police Department officials forbid affected officers to speak to
reporters on the record.

The officer said passengers piled out of their rooms as a voice on the
public address system told them they faced an emergency. The announcement
told them to grab life vests and head to the deck. There, people gathered
around lifeboats as the ship drifted out into the river current, with the
boat's stern, or rear, pulling away from the wharf first, the officer said.

"I could not only feel the current taking us, almost like spinning, but I
could see it," the officer said.

The Coast Guard said 1,100 people, mostly law enforcement officials, were
aboard the Ecstasy during the incident. The ship has been commissioned by
the Federal Emergency Management Agency to provide housing for more than
1,600 people, mainly New Orleans police, fire and other emergency-response
workers and their families, FEMA spokesman Jack Brandais said.

The Coast Guard couldn't say how close the Ecstasy came to hitting one of
the military ships. The police officer said only a few feet separated the
ships at one point, while Williams put the gap at about 20 feet.

Though the broken moorings could have led to a disaster, the Ecstasy
actually was out of control for only minutes, Tharp said. Cruise ship
personnel were able to activate a bow thruster within two minutes of
learning that lines were snapping, and they got one of the main stern
propellers running minutes later, she said. The bow thruster was critical to
missing the military ships, and "once they had that bow thruster on line,
they had some semblance of control," Tharp said.

Notified by the Ecstasy, the Coast Guard used mariner broadcasts to keep
other ships out of the area.

River pilot Don Gagnon noticed the Ecstasy's separation from its dock as he
waited for a small launch boat in Algiers, Tharp said. Gagnon raced across
the river on the launch boat, climbed across a wastewater-holding barge
attached to the Ecstasy and joined the cruise ship's crew on the bridge of
the ship, Tharp said. To try to gain control of the cruise ship, Gagnon used
his hand-held radio to summon help from three tugs -- the Louisiana, the
Alison and the Jefferson -- and told the crew where to drop anchor after the
Ecstasy had drifted near Algiers, Tharp said.

Before it came to a rest, the cruise ship had drifted seven-tenths of a
mile. Though it had been docked with its bow pointed downriver, it flipped
around during the early morning ride, redirecting its bow upriver near
Algiers.

The Ecstasy was returned to the Poland Avenue Wharf and was moved again to
the Julia Street Wharf later in the day. Its use for emergency housing
continues: Saturday's incident didn't cause FEMA to question using cruise
ships as giant dormitories, Brandais said.

(remainder of article)
http://www.nola.com/news/t-p/frontpa...2939822690.xml

PDF front page with Carnival Ecstasy picture
http://www.nola.com/news/t-p/pageone...21206A01ME.pdf



--
Andy P. Jung
Metairie, Louisiana U.S.A.
(on the Western side of the 17th Street Canal)
http://www.JungWorld.com/

To reply via e-mail, please visit my web site.


  #2  
Old February 13th, 2006, 09:32 AM posted to rec.travel.cruises
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Default ECSTASY breaks loose

Andy:

Thanks for the harrowing story of the Ecstasy adrift.

Aloha

  #3  
Old February 14th, 2006, 09:22 AM posted to rec.travel.cruises
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Default ECSTASY breaks loose

On 2/13/06 3:32 AM Mark O. Polo consulted a Magic 8 Ball and declared:
Andy:

Thanks for the harrowing story of the Ecstasy adrift.

Aloha


Sounds like a Porno Title to me. "Ecstasy Breaks Loose!" starring
Ecstasy, Vagina Slyms, Amber Waves, Jon Hardonn and Dicksen Handy. :-D

--
________
To email me, Edit "blog" from my email address.
Brian M. Kochera
"Some mistakes are too much fun to only make once!"
View My Web Page: http://home.earthlink.net/~brian1951
  #4  
Old February 14th, 2006, 08:42 PM posted to rec.travel.cruises
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Default ECSTASY breaks loose

Thus spake Brian K :

On 2/13/06 3:32 AM Mark O. Polo consulted a Magic 8 Ball and declared:
Andy:

Thanks for the harrowing story of the Ecstasy adrift.

Aloha


Sounds like a Porno Title to me. "Ecstasy Breaks Loose!" starring
Ecstasy, Vagina Slyms, Amber Waves, Jon Hardonn and Dicksen Handy. :-D


Must add that one to my collection. :-)
--
dillon

Could have been is in the past
Could be is in the future
There is only the now
  #5  
Old February 15th, 2006, 02:49 AM posted to rec.travel.cruises
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Default ECSTASY breaks loose

"Mark O. Polo" wrote in message
...
Andy:

Thanks for the harrowing story of the Ecstasy adrift.

Aloha


Here are more details
http://carnivalcruiseblog.com/blog/a...se#comment-259


--
Andy P. Jung
Metairie, Louisiana U.S.A.
(on the Western side of the 17th Street Canal)
http://www.JungWorld.com/

To reply via e-mail, please visit my web site.


 




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