Carnival passenger share her experience
February 21, 2013 · Print This Article
More than 4,200 passenger and crew were stranded for about five days last week on board the Triumph Carnival cruise ship, by now we all have heard tales of what went on during that that time. We know a fire started and passengers lost electricity, but in a one-on-one interview a local radio station (http://www.wtam.com/main.html) was able to interview at a local passenger who said she experienced horrific conditions on the passenger cruise the ship was towed into port in Mobile, Alabama last week.
Maria Hernandez said she was asleep when a friend woke her up at about 4:30a.m. because there was a fire on the ship, at first she didn’t believe them she said, but then her friends opened their bedroom door and she saw the smoke.
“Sure enough there was a hallway full of smoke,” Hernandez said.
Hernandez described how the toilets quickly became backed up, flushing did no good and feces began to spill onto the floor.
Hernandez said a few fights did break out and people were stealing cell phones and cell phone chargers.
“We had stuff taken out of rooms like tennis shoes, cameras, all kinds of devices,” she said. “It was uncontrollable chaos, a lady fell down the stairs and she refused to sign a document.
Hernandez said it didn’t matter where anyone went, they could not avoid the smell.
“We couldn’t eat because the smell was just everywhere,’ she said. “We had to carry rags to cover our mouths.”
Hernandez said people would go to the bathroom inside plastic bags because the toilets didn’t work, and she even shared a bag with her friends. She said it was that, or run out of bags.
Eventually, Hernandez said a rescue team brought food but there was a three to six hour wait
“All we got was condiments and bread,” she said.
Hernandez said she did not shower because the water pressure was too low and it was dark because the lights were out. Also, she said people brought their mattresses to the dock because the smell was so bad in the rooms.
For someone who was not on the ship, imagination can run wild about what went on during the days of no light, and feces everywhere, but Hernandez said for the most part, the passengers behaved well.
“Most people were helping people,” she said. “] My friends and I] felt that we could hold up better,” so she let the children and elderly eat first.
“Everything was controlled, it was more about helping each other,” she added, however she said she is going to go see a doctor.
Hernandez said the food on the ship went bad and she bit into a fish taco.
“Right now I’m getting a little sick, I don’t know if it’s from the trip,” she said. “We did inhale a little bit of toxins.”
Hernandez said she is surprised no person died considering there was no actual security and people were left to their own devices.
“They did take I believe like two people for health reasons off the ship,” she said. ”They shouldn’t have let us out there that long, they could have gotten another ship; they had three other shops cruising around. I was thinking maybe getting the kids the elderly the mothers that had health problems . . . they didn’t even get them out.”
Hernandez said Carnival “had no concern for our health . . . the only people that were concerned [for the passengers] where the workers”.
Hernandez said she was approached by a lawyer but does not know if she will take legal action, possible turning her $300 dollar cruise into a profit.
She said the only time she feared for her life was when she awoke in the middle of the night and saw the ship was on fire.
“The two most dramatic and bad things that I feared and think of is what all my friends and colleagues feared . . . when I got out of that room, we didn’t know if the fire was contained,” she said. “I’m like, ok this is the end. The first thing that came to my head was “all these people are not going to fit on this life boat.””