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  #121  
Old February 11th, 2013, 07:40 PM
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Hi Everyone,

Discussions with the relevant authorities are still ongoing and in the absence of a guaranteed departure time we've regrettably taken the decision to cancel the remainder of this cruise.

We're currently looking at travel arrangements for all passengers and will be updating them in the morning. We're keeping all passengers on board up to date with the latest information and have set up a customer care desk on board to answer any immediate questions.

We've flown extra support staff out to La Palma tonight who are onboard providing assistance to our passengers.

Regards,

Dan.
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  #122  
Old February 12th, 2013, 02:35 AM
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You've done the right thing Thomsons

I had a suspicion that this cruise would have to be curtailed, I dont believe pax could have carried on and enjoyed their holidays with this horrible distressing incident hanging upon them...such a shame for all

so, well done thomsons, I know from personal experience all pax will be well looked after

wont be an easy job getting all home from la palma, its a very small island

may I send my good wishes to all onboard and I hope you’re home soon
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  #123  
Old February 12th, 2013, 03:25 AM
Nix111 Nix111 is offline
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Default Update from on board

Hi

I'm currently on board the Majesty just wanted to say what a brilliant job Thomson have done handling this terrible tragedy.

The cruise has been cancelled which is the right thing and we've been offered a full refund and a discount on future cruise.

The whole crew have been great trying to ensure we all are informed at each stage. I can't fault the way this has been managed. Well done Thomson!

We are waiting to find out when we'll be going home but in the meantime we continue to enjoy the onboard facilities.

Nix
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  #124  
Old February 12th, 2013, 03:37 AM
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many thaks Nix for taking this time to update us...very much appreciated

we are all terribly concerned for you....very pleasing to hear that you are all being well looked after

its at times like this that Thoms really do show their true forte...well done thoms

I wish you all my best for your homeward journeys
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  #125  
Old February 12th, 2013, 03:42 AM
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Well done, Thomson, for taking care of everyone.
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  #126  
Old February 12th, 2013, 03:52 AM
clive and anne clive and anne is online now
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Thanks Nik for your update.
At least the situation appears to be resolving itself.
We know of at least 4 contributers nto Cruise Critic, Would be nice to think you are all in touch with each other and giving support to each other.
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Thomson Topaz 1999
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First Choice Ausonia 2001
Airtours Sunbird 2002
Island Escape 2003
Airtours Sundream 2004
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NCL Pride of America 2008
Thomson Destiny 2010
Thomson Celebration 2012
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  #127  
Old February 12th, 2013, 03:58 AM
ladyjayneq ladyjayneq is offline
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Default Message for Dan

Whilst I am extremely upset over what has happened, I am also concerened, we are due to be joining the Majesty on Friday the 15th. Can you advise if she will be in service and the cruise will go ahead.
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  #128  
Old February 12th, 2013, 06:21 AM
Vitalsign Vitalsign is offline
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Default Condolences to the families of those who died

What a terrible tragedy and my partner's and my condolences to the families of those lost.
Having read various threads I am surprised that crews still board lifeboats when doing safety drills when it would appear unnecessary according to the merchantseamens union.
My partner an engineer thought the ship wouldn't sail again for a while as it is very difficult to check steel cables without stress testing which will take time. Unfortunately he says the cables although greased regularly can corrode from the inside due to sea water getting in and therefore from the outside the cables would appear to be ok - unlike rope which would generally fray/weaken from the outside. The only way any deterioration can be detected is by a 2.5 stress test being done regularly - he compared this to what he has to do at work and what they do on the Humber Bridge!! I hope that as the ship is 22 years old that all the steel cables are replaced before she sails again.
I was on Ocean Village just off the island of Mayreau a few years ago and the crew had already taken the barbecue/booze ashore before the passengers went. Unfortunately the sea became very rough and the whole trip was abandoned. We watched in horror as two tenders struggled to be lifted aboard which took over an hour - the captain turning the ship a few times in his efforts. The hooks which had been lowered to raise the boats were swinging all over and the swell was such that the boats disappeared out of sight even to us from the deck. Once or twice the crew standing outside the boats trying to catch the hooks were very nearly hit by them. God knows what would have happened if they had been or had fallen into the sea. We considered them very brave and when back on board they were applauded by all who had seen their trial. Of course, as you would expect from some idiots on board, there were complaints about not going to the island that day!!!
Our thoughts also go out to the rest of the crew and passengers who have had to witness this terrible tragedy and lets hope it NEVER happens again.

Thomson Spirit Palma to Sharm el Sheikh Oct 2005
Thomson Celebration Red Sea Magic Jan 2007
Ocean Village Caribbean & Central America Feb 2008
Ocean Village Eastern Med August 2008
Ocean Village 2 Caribbean Feb 2009
Ocean Village Caribbean Mar 2010
Thomson Dream Cuba & Caribbean Feb 2011
Thomson Celebration Eastern Med August 2011
Thomson Celebration Red Sea Magic April 2012
Thomson Eastern Wonders Red Sea Repo to Med April/May 2012
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  #129  
Old February 12th, 2013, 06:38 AM
Nix111 Nix111 is offline
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Hi Dan

I don't think the 15th sailing will go ahead to be honest, I don't think the ship has been signed off as safe as if it was we'd be sailing back to maker our homeward flights. As it stands currently Thompson are spending a fortune on rearranged flights & hotels which I'm sure they'd avoid if they could.

The guests who were booked on a two week cruise have already flown to Tenerife to hotels and apparently will be told more in a few days so its possible you may sail but not likely I suspect

I'll keep my fingers crossed for you, rest assured If you don't Thomsom will look after you I'm sure.

It looks like we are on for another night as they can't fly us today, I can think of worse places to be stuck for a night!

Nix
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  #130  
Old February 12th, 2013, 06:49 AM
clive and anne clive and anne is online now
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Thanks nix,
Has the mood on board improved any? Are there any works going on around the remaining lifeboats?
I have taken the liberty of copying your updates to facebook in order to keep as many people as possible informed, including many who are booked on future cruises.
Thanks again
Clive
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  #131  
Old February 12th, 2013, 06:55 AM
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I believe the falls (steel cables) are replaced every 2 (or so ) years on board passenger vessels?....I may be wrong?

yes...imagine how difficult and dangerous this task would be in the event of a real emergency.....trying to deploy a full to capacity lifeboat in open seas while the ship is foundering....doesn’t bear thinking about, thankfully its incredibly unlikely that such events happen (especially to passenger vessels) but is precisely why so many drills and crew exercises are practiced so regularly

and I for one feel very thankful for that

i would imagine (but may be wrong) that it is possibly even more dangerous for deck hands to have to climb down ropes to access the lifeboat once it has been deployed in the water?

I am sorry to say that I am rather guilty of not appreciating how physical and dangerous this work can be for seafarers
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  #132  
Old February 12th, 2013, 07:57 AM
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Just hope they check other ships before this happens again
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  #133  
Old February 12th, 2013, 07:57 AM
clive and anne clive and anne is online now
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I know Thomson are looking in here. Could I ask them to let us know ASAP what is happening to the cruise due to start 15th Feb. There are a lot of anxious people here and on Facebook who are booked on this cruise and dont know whats happening.
Many Thanks
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First Choice Ausonia 2001
Airtours Sunbird 2002
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  #134  
Old February 12th, 2013, 08:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nix111 View Post
Hi Dan

I don't think the 15th sailing will go ahead to be honest, I don't think the ship has been signed off as safe as if it was we'd be sailing back to maker our homeward flights. As it stands currently Thompson are spending a fortune on rearranged flights & hotels which I'm sure they'd avoid if they could.

The guests who were booked on a two week cruise have already flown to Tenerife to hotels and apparently will be told more in a few days so its possible you may sail but not likely I suspect

I'll keep my fingers crossed for you, rest assured If you don't Thomsom will look after you I'm sure.

It looks like we are on for another night as they can't fly us today, I can think of worse places to be stuck for a night!

Nix


Thompson has no other choice as it can not sail with a lifeboat missing.
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Jewel of the Seas 2012
Oriana 36 Nights 2011
Independence of the Seas 2010
Oceana 28 Nights 2009-2010
Sea Princess 2009
Independence of the Seas 2008
Jewel of the Seas 2007
Artemis 38 Nights 2006
Island Princess 2004
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  #135  
Old February 12th, 2013, 08:29 AM
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CRUISIN LINDA CRUISIN LINDA is online now
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On our second ever cruise, we were on the Ocean Village 2 and anchored off Villefranche. It was our first experience of tendering. We had gone over on the tender OK, been on a lovely trip along the coast to Monte Carlo, and come back about 4pm, by which time the sea had got really rough. It was terrible going back. A man sitting by the door of the tender was clinging on to his young daughter as the waves soaked him. I was glad to get back on the ship, but even that was fraught with danger as the tender heaved up and down horribly. The crew were grabbing you by both arms and hauling you on the ship.

After a cuppa I went up on deck to see the tender boats being put back in their place. They got some back OK, but there was a big problem with one of them and as with vitalsign's experience the hooks were swinging wildly about and the crew who were standing on the boat were trying to catch them. Then suddenly I heard someone shout that someone had fallen in and indeed one of the crew was foundering in the water. Another boat swiftly sped across and managed to haul him on board. The Captain came on the PA system and told us that he was OK, to which we all heaved a sigh of relief. Eventually they had to turn the ship around, so they could get the remaining tenders back on board on the leeside.

That time it ended happily, but sadly, as we have seen, that is not always the case. I think I read that 12 people have died in lifeboat drills in the last 10 years.

I think we all underestimate the dangers that the crew have to face. We see them smiling at us in the corridor, we see them serving us a table or making up our cabins, always cheerful, but we forget all the other jobs they have to do, some of them very dangerous.
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Last edited by CRUISIN LINDA; February 12th, 2013 at 08:30 AM.
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  #136  
Old February 12th, 2013, 08:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timespliters View Post
Thompson has no other choice as it can not sail with a lifeboat missing.
Not true, there are not enough spaces on life boats to accommodate all of the passengers on board. They utilise life rafts should an emergency arise which automatically inflate when dropped into the water. There are enough life boats AND life rafts combined to accommodate everyone on board and more. In fact, if the ship had continued with the cruise, they would be forced to decommission a life boat on the opposite side of the ship to the damaged one since it is maritime law that the ship must have symmetry in the number of life boats in use on its port and starboard sides. In this instance, life rafts would be used, and passengers originally assigned to these muster stations would be reassigned to another location.

This is my understanding anyway!
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  #137  
Old February 12th, 2013, 08:39 AM
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I know the lifeboats have to be symmetrical, but does anyone know why? Seems a bit strange to me
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  #138  
Old February 12th, 2013, 08:52 AM
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According to SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) treaty, each side of the ship must carry enough enclosed power driven lifeboats to handle over 50% of the total number of the people on board AND each side of the ship must carry inflatable liferafts to handle over 50% of the total number of the people on board.

This means that even if the ship is listing to one side so as to make the lifeboats inaccessible, or the deck in question is unavailable for any other reason, the cruise ship will still enough lifeboats and liferafts to accommodate the whole ship.
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  #139  
Old February 12th, 2013, 09:00 AM
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Thanks geraintw - that makes perfect sense
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  #140  
Old February 12th, 2013, 09:00 AM
sodafountain sodafountain is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Geraintw View Post
According to SOLAS (Safety of Life at Sea) treaty, each side of the ship must carry enough enclosed power driven lifeboats to handle over 50% of the total number of the people on board AND each side of the ship must carry inflatable liferafts to handle over 50% of the total number of the people on board.

This means that even if the ship is listing to one side so as to make the lifeboats inaccessible, or the deck in question is unavailable for any other reason, the cruise ship will still enough lifeboats and liferafts to accommodate the whole ship.
Although that doesn't answer this question:

Quote:
Originally Posted by CRUISIN LINDA View Post
I know the lifeboats have to be symmetrical, but does anyone know why? Seems a bit strange to me
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