Trouble for another cruise ship

Posted: March 15, 2013

PHILIPSBURG, St. Maarten - Passengers from the cruise ship Carnival Dream headed to the airport Thursday instead of sailing home after a generator problem halted their trip in the latest maintenance headache for the world's largest cruise line.

The Dream was in St. Maarten on the final stop of a Caribbean cruise when the crew announced it would not be sailing home to Port Canaveral, Fla., because of a mechanical issue with a diesel generator, passengers said.

Carnival Cruise Lines said the problem with the backup emergency diesel generator was discovered during a test Wednesday. A company statement said that the ship did not lose power but that there were periodic interruptions to elevators and restrooms.

Carnival said all systems were functioning normally Thursday but the company decided to get the passengers home by air.

Passengers strolling about the Dutch Caribbean town of Philipsburg told the Associated Press that the power and water were out for 10 to 20 minutes, contradicting media reports of longer outages and unsanitary conditions.

"We have toilets. We have water. It's no different than a regular day at sea," Tasha Larson, 31, of Winston-Salem, N.C., said after disembarking with her boyfriend to spend the day in St. Maarten.

An engine fire last month crippled the Carnival ship Triumph, leaving 4,200 people stranded for five days without working toilets or power.

The Dream had been scheduled to sail from Port Canaveral on Saturday. That voyage has been canceled.

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