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One dead, two critically injured in Harmony of the Seas' lifeboat drill accident - report

  • Written by Kari Reinikainen

One person has been killed and two other critically injured after a lifeboat fell from the world's biggest cruise liner, the Harmony of the Seas, which was docked in the French port of Marseille, the Daily Telegraph in London reports on its website.

“According to La Provence, the local newspaper, five members of the ship's navigation crew were on board when the lifeboat became detached. The accident is understood to have taken place during a basic security drill,” the report said.

Harmony of the Seas belongs to Royal Caribbean International, the contemporary market unit of Royal Caribbean Cruises, Limited (RCCL), the world’s second largest cruise shipping group. The French built ship is operating its first season.

Two officers die as cruise ship hits bridge in German Canal

  • Written by Kari Reinikainen

Two officers if Viking Freya, a river cruise ship belonging to Viking River cruises, have lost their lives after the vessel hit a bridge on the Rhine-Main-Danube (RMD) Canal in Germany, local media reports say.

The accident happened at 0130 am on Sunday morning as Viking Freya was on its way to Budapest in Hungary. It hit a bridge that crosses the canal, which liks the two most important inland waterways of Europe. The wheelhouse of the vessel was completely destroyed in the collision and the two crew members died as a result.

The cause of the accident remains unknown. The wheelhouse can be lowered to allow the vessel to pass under low bridges, but at the time of the accident it had not been brought to the low position, a reported on the website of Bild.de said.

None of the 184 passengers on board were hurt. The ship has a crew of 49 and those that lost their lives were Hungarian citizens, the report said.

Carnival Corporation orders three new ships from Meyer Turku and Papenburg shipyards

  • Written by Teijo Niemelä

Meyer Turku has signed a memorandum of agreement with the world’s largest cruise ship operator Carnival Corporation & plc for three new 180 000 gross ton cruise ships. Two of the ships will be built for Carnival Cruise Line with delivery dates expected in 2020 and 2022, and one for P&O Cruises to be delivered in 2020.

All three ships will be Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) powered and will be based on the next-generation “green cruising” ship design developed with Carnival Corporation.

“We are proud to be at the forefront of introducing LNG-powered ships to the cruise industry, working with our partners to achieve shipbuilding breakthroughs like this that will help us produce the most efficient and sustainable ships we have ever built,” said Arnold Donald, CEO of Carnival Corporation & plc.

Jan Meyer, CEO of Meyer Turku said: “We are very happy to work again with both Carnival Cruise Line and P&O Cruises. In Turku we are also very excited as these ships will be the first ones to the get full benefit from our investments in next-generation production facilities and IT-systems. Another important aspect is the long-term horizon for our business. It creates an environment where we and also our suppliers can grow and develop. In the end this will lead to a lot of good work for us and other Finnish companies," Jan Meyer comments.

In conjunction with the order for Turku, the delivery of the 2nd ship for Costa Cruises will shift from 2020 to 2021.

Hapag-Lloyd emerges as previously undisclosed Vard expedition cruise ship customer

  • Written by Kari Reinikainen

Vard Holdings Limited, the Norwegian unit of Fincantieri, says it has won a contract for two expedition cruise ships from Hapag-Lloyd Kreuzfahrten, the German luxury and expedition cruise operator that is owned by the Anglo-German TUI AG group.

A letter or intent regarding the ships was signed in May and at the time, Vard said the counterpart was “an undisclosed cruise company.” Final contravt is subject to financing.

The 16,100 gross ton vessels will be 138 metres in length and 22 metres wide and they will have accommodation for 240 passengers in 120 cabins. They will feature a water sports marina and extensive spa and fitness areas.

The hulls will be built in Tulcea in Romania and the fitting out will be carried at at Langsten in Norway. Both are Vard’s shipyards. The vessels will be delivered in the first and final quarter of 2019, respectively.

Genting Hong Kong to turn MV Werften leading cruise ship builder, unveils investment plan

  • Written by Kari Reinikainen

Genting Hong Kong, the rapidly expanding Asian cruise shipping group which acquired three shipyards in Germany last year, plans to developed the MV Werften yards as they are now known into a leading builder of cruise ships, Genting Hong Kong said in its first half 2016 interim result statement.

“The combination of the three yards’ proximity, size and facilities on-site makes it a natural builder of large cruise ships. Post re-organization, the Group’s goal is to transform MV Werften to become the world’s leading and most efficient cruise shipbuilder by making key investments and modernisations, such as thin plate laser welding lines, a cabin module factory, a new covered section block building hall, the modernization of manufacturing control systems and new offices and facilities<’ the company said in a statement.

“Combined with these improvements and the growing workforce of 1,400 employees, the Group envisions MV Werften to output two Neo-Panamax and one Panamax cruise ships per year,” it reiterated an earlier stated objective.

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