Sea Princess cruise ship accidents, incidents and law news reports relate to a passenger vessel with IMO number 9150913, owned by the Princess Cruises line (a Carnival Corporation brand). Among the unfortunate events at sea are Norovirus illness outbreaks, crew and passenger incidents (deaths, injuries, crimes), shore excursion incidents, pollution, machinery malfunctions, christening bad luck, drug smuggling (world’s biggest cruise ship cocaine bust).
Here you can also track MS Sea Princess position at sea.using the AIS live ships tracker of VesselFinder. The 77,500-ton 1970-passenger Princess cruise ship Sea was built in 1998 by the Fincantieri shipbuilding company in Italy.
Sea Princess accidents & incidents
At the Sea Princess CruiseMinus page you will find a complete list of this Princess cruise ship’s major accidents and cruise incidents. Reports are made by our own staff using official data from major online news media sources, Wikipedia and USCG (Coast Guard) reports.
Here we also post updates on Sea Princess cruise law news. They are related to recent crimes being investigated. Among those could be arrests, filed lawsuits, charges and fines, grievances, settled /withdrawn legal actions, lost cases, etc.
You can add more details or submit your own Sea Princess ship incidents (negative cruise experience reports) via the Cruise Minus “contact us” form.
This is link to the ship’s official site Princess.com.
- Failures during ship christening ceremonies are considered very ominous. When the ship left the P&O Cruises UK fleet (previously cruising for 2 years as “MV Adonia”), she had to be christened again as “Sea Princess” before joining the Princess Cruises fleet. The ceremony was scheduled for May 26, 2005.
- However, the appointed godmother Mrs Goldie Hawn (an American actress) refused to christen the vessel, saying she was feeling unwell after the flight from the USA to England. All the guests waiting on the pier in Southampton were disappointed. Then the shipowner invited Mrs Joanna Lumley (an UK actress) to christen the ship in the Mrs Hawn’s absence.
- May 12, 2007, the scheduled cruise was last minute cancelled due to propulsion system problems. As compensation, all booked passengers received full refunds, plus a 25% future Princess cruise booking discount.
- August 15, 2008, the vessel experienced a propulsion system issue with one of its stern thrusters. Both incidents occurred upon entering and leaving the homeport Boston MA. Both times the ship was accompanied by a tug boat to assist her if needed.
- November 4, 2008, upon docking at Port Zante in Basseterre (St Kitts), the ship experienced technical issues and remained anchored during the whole port stay. Since the port had no tug boat to assist the docking, all passengers were tendered to the adjacent marina. Earlier the same day was reported that the ship had engine problems and for a time was drifting at sea.
- July 26, 2009, at ~8 pm the ship experienced a propulsion failure. The incident occurred when the vessel was transiting the Inside Passage. For ~15 min the ship was carried only by its momentum with rudder steerage. Investigation report said the incident was due to the main circuit breaker, which tripped and shut down both propulsion motors (portside and starboard propulsion units). When the crew reset the breaker, the propulsion was restored. Two days later the same incident happened a second time when the ship was transiting the Lynn Canal. After the vessel inspection in call port Juneau AK, the auxiliary circuit breaker was replaced.
- Four times in 2009 (on Aug 14, Sept 1, Oct 23, and Nov 2) during the Alaskan season, the vessel was cited for pollution. Its wastewater had higher levels of copper and ammonia than allowed by the Alaska’s wastewater standards.
- Both 2014 September 14 and 29 cruises were cancelled due to technical problems that resulted in reduced cruising speeds. As compensation, all passengers were fully refunded, and additionally received a free Princess cruise credit. On previous voyages the ship continuously experienced propulsion issues leading to major itinerary changes, skipping ports of call in Australia and on South Pacific islands. The vessel had to enter a 2-week drydock for repairs.
Crew & Passenger Death accidents
- January 1, 2010, a male passenger died ashore when the ship was docked in Tortola (BVI). The man was found unconscious in the waters of Cane Garden Bay. The following CPR efforts regained some consciousness. Still, he was not capable of breathing on his own and also had a weak pulse. The beach lifeguards got a huge amount of food out of him during rescue measures. The man was transported from the beach to a local hospital, where 1 1/2 hours later he died. The Cane Garden Bay beach area and three other beaches were red-flagged when the accident occurred.
- December 22, 2010, a 50-year-old female passenger fell overboard from her cabin’s balcony. During the accident, the ship was en-route from Curaçao to Grand Turk on a roundtrip 14-day Christmas cruise from homeport Bridgetown Barbados. After the woman was reported missing by the husband, the ship turned around and conducted a search and rescue operation, later joined by an USCG plane. The body was never found. The CCTV camera footage confirmed that she went overboard from her balcony.
Crew & Passenger incidents (injuries, crimes)
- December 3, 2010 (law news), three female passengers from UK filed lawsuit against Princess Cruises. The 79-year-old mother was traveling with her daughters (aged 51 and 55) to celebrate a 50th birthday. They all suffered severe headaches and sickness.due to a leak in the air conditioning unit in their cruise cabin. The incident occurred on an 14-days voyage in October 2009.
- November 3, 2012, an Australian news media reported an elderly male passenger was medevaced (airlifted) by a Seahawk Navy helicopter sent from the HMAS Toowoomba frigate ship. The frigate was participating in training operations off Fremantle, when was contacted by the Princess cruise ship for assistance. The airlifted man suffered from stomach pains and was transported to the SCGH (Sir Charles Gairdner) teaching hospital in Nedlands.
- August 10, 2015 (law news) in October 13, 2014. a 63-year-old male passenger (of Romanian origin) was criminally charged with indecent assault of a female passenger (of Australian origin). She complained to the Auckland police he was touching her genitalia while asleep. The Auckland High Court sentenced him to pay the woman AUD 5,000 (~US$3,700) reparation, plus NZD 3,000 (~US$2,000) court costs. The incident happened on a cruise from Australia to New Zealand (one-way Brisbane to Auckland).
Drug smuggling incident – world’s largest cruise ship drug bust ever (2016)
- August 28, 2016, Australian news sources reported that AFP (Federal Police) officers arrested in Sydney Harbor port 3 Sea Princess passengers – a 63-year-old male (Andre Tamine), and two Canadian females – ages 22 (Melina Roberce) and 28 (Isabelle Lagace). They were charged with drug smuggling of a total of 95 kg of cocaine (street value of ~USD 30,5 million). This quantity ranks the incident as the world’s largest cruise ship drug bust ever.
- Police used sniffer dogs for searching the ship docked in Sydney. The cocaine was found in locked suitcases. The charge of “importing a commercial quantity of a border controlled drug” carries a max penalty of life imprisonment. The Sea Princess cruise ship was berthed in Sydney Harbor as one of the ports of call along its 66-day long “World Cruise” itinerary (July 6- Aug 28) from Southampton UK to Sydney AU, visiting USA, Canada and South America.
- The drug bust made all international headlines after the investigation revealed that the three women had posted on Instagram numerous photos of themselves highlighting their luxury vacation.
- December 16 (2016, law news) Isabelle Lagace pleaded guilty to the charges. According to Australian Border Force, the three women were working with a “very well organised syndicate”. Sentences are expected to be given on August 28, 2017.
Norovirus cruise illness outbreaks
- May 2006, while operating in Europe on a round-trip cruise from Southampton England, the ship reported 232 passengers and 18 crew suffering from Noro virus. As compensation, all sick passengers received a 30% refund and GBP150 in onboard credit on a future Princess cruise.
- March 2007, the line reported as suffering from Noro virus a total of 82 passengers (or 4,1% of all) and 5 crew (or 0,6% of all). The ship was on a 14-days Caribbean cruise round-trip from homeport Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale) Florida, voyage March 3 to 17.
- May 20, 2009, a local news media reported a Noro virus outbreak on the ship affecting 11 couples. All sick were disembarked in Montego Bay Jamaica and quarantined in a local hotel for 48 hours. The line confirmed the incident.
- May 2011, CDC reported on voyage May 20 to 30, a Norovirus outbreak (gastrointestinal illness) infected 128 passengers (out of 2053, or 6,2%) and 13 crew (out of 838, or 1,6%). All sick suffered from Norovirus symptoms (vomiting, diarrhea) and were quarantined to their cabins. On the next voyage (May 30 to June 9, 2011), CDC reported another Norovirus illness outbreak, affecting 144 passengers (out of 2128, or 6,8%) and 8 crew (out of 840, or 1%). During both incidents, the ship was operating a 10-day Alaskan cruise round-trip from homeport San Francisco, CA.
- March 2017, news media reported a Noro virus outbreak affected a total of 11 passengers, who were not allowed disembarkation in call port Bridgetown Barbados. The ship was on a 90-day “World Cruise” from Brisbane Australia (itinerary Jan 8 – Apr 7) carrying around 1950 passengers.
- Note: When the itinerary doesn’t include US cruise ports, the ship is not required to report to CDC, thus no official illness report would be issued.
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