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2 crew members die aboard Holland America Line cruise ship in the Bahamas – National | Globalnews.ca


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Two crew members aboard a Holland America Line cruise ship were killed on Friday following an “incident” in one of the ship’s engineering rooms, according to a statement from the U.S.-owned cruise line.

The fatalities occurred on the Nieuw Amsterdam cruise ship while it was docked at Half Moon Cay in the Bahamas.

Holland America said the two employees were killed during an “accidental steam release” around 9:20 a.m. local time. USA Today identified the crew members as third engineer Joseph Terrado and wiper Wawan Gusnawan. The employees were from the Philippines and Indonesia, respectively.

Their exact causes of death have not been publicly released.

“All of us at Holland America Line are deeply saddened by this event,” the company said in a statement. “We’ve been in contact with the families of both team members and are offering our support to them and to all of our crew at this difficult time. The safety, security and welfare of all guests and crew are the company’s absolute priority.”

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The cruise line said “the appropriate authorities” were notified of the deaths. An investigation led by the Bahamas Maritime Authority is currently underway.

Crew members onboard the Nieuw Amsterdam have been offered counselling by Holland America.

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The Nieuw Amsterdam initially set sail from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., on a seven-night voyage beginning March 16. The crew member deaths came on the last full day of the cruise trip.

Passengers told NBC News the captain cried while announcing the crew member deaths over the ship’s public address system.

Laine Doss, who was travelling on the Nieuw Amsterdam, told the outlet the announcement made the mood of the voyage’s last day “extremely sombre.”

“That entire scenario did affect the entire cruise,” Doss said. “Things were cancelled, joyous events were cancelled, and we really just thought about mortality — the people who perished on the ship.”

The captain asked for a moment of silence among those on board.

Fire onboard a Carnival cruise ship

The Holland America crew member deaths weren’t the only incident to occur aboard a cruise ship last weekend.

Though there were no fatalities, the Carnival Freedom ship (owned by Carnival Cruises) had a fire with thick, black smoke pluming from its exhaust funnel while off the coast of Eleuthera Island in the Bahamas on Saturday.

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No passengers aboard the Carnival Freedom were injured, though two firefighting crew members were reportedly treated for minor smoke inhalation.

The fire is the second of its kind to occur aboard the Carnival Freedom since 2022.

Some witnesses claimed to see a lightning strike or hear the sound of thunder prior to the fire, the cruise line said. In a statement, the company revealed the fire caused damage to the vessel, which now requires “immediate repair to stabilize the funnel.”

The flames were fully extinguished by crew members hours after the blaze began.

There were about 3,700 passengers aboard the cruise when the fire erupted.

As a result of the funnel fire, Carnival Cruises said it was forced to cancel its next two cruises (March 25 and March 29) out of Port Canaveral in Florida. The company said it has offered travellers full refunds and credit that can be used toward a future cruise.

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