February 15, 2013

Passengers cheer escape from 'horrible' cruise

Brendan Farrington and Jay Reeves / The Associated Press

(Continued from page 2)

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Passengers from the disabled Carnival Triumph cruise ship arrive by bus at the Hilton Riverside Hotel in New Orleans on Friday.

AP

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Veronica Arriaga, of Angleton, Texas, a passenger from the disabled Carnival Triumph cruise ship, holds a sign referring to the red biohazard bags used as toilets, as she arrives at the Hilton Riverside Hotel in New Orleans on Friday.

AP

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She said "there's poop and urine all along the floor. The floor is flooded with sewer water ... and we had to poop in bags."

The company disputed the accounts of passengers who described the ship as filthy, saying employees were doing everything to ensure people were comfortable.

Carnival has canceled a dozen more planned voyages aboard the Triumph and acknowledged the crippled ship had been plagued by other mechanical problems in the weeks before the engine-room blaze. The National Transportation Safety Board has opened an investigation.

Passengers were supposed to get a full refund and discounts on future cruises, and Carnival announced Wednesday they would each get an additional $500 in compensation.

Kendall Jenkins of Houston won her first cruise as a contest prize. But she's never planning to set sail on a cruise again after the ill-fated voyage of the Triumph, despite the offer for another free cruise.

"This is my first and last cruise. So if anyone wants my free cruise look me up," said Jenkins, 24.

She and her friend, Brittany Ferguson, bounded off the ship Thursday night clad in bathrobes. They immediately kissed the pavement at the Port of Mobile, having spent their final minutes aboard jumping up and down excitedly.

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Weary passengers from the disabled Carnival Triumph cruise ship arrive by bus at the Hilton Riverside Hotel in New Orleans on Friday.

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