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Carnival cruise vacation ends, but at least the toilets are flushing

March 14, 2013|By Matt Pearce
  • Pictured above, the Carnival Triumph, which lost power in the Gulf of Mexico in February.
Pictured above, the Carnival Triumph, which lost power in the Gulf of Mexico… (David Martin / Associated…)

Another Carnival Cruise ship, the Dream, was disabled Thursday, this time at its St. Maarten dock because of a problem with its emergency diesel generator, and the company and others took to Twitter to describe the situation.

This time around the toilets are working and there is plenty of food. But passengers will have to fly, not cruise, home in what is likely to be an abbreviated vacation.

The news of another stranded ship rekindled memories of the Carnival's nightmare voyage home through the Gulf of Mexico a few weeks ago on the Triumph. On that ship, 3,141 passengers were stuck at sea with no power or working toilets.

The Dream has it much better. The faults with the generator were discovered while the ship was docked in St. Maarten, a beach haven in the northeastern Caribbean. The company has offered to fly passengers home and reimburse them for the three remaining days of the cruise, which began in Florida on Saturday.

"We can confirm that only one public restroom was taken offline for cleaning based on toilet overflow and there was a total of one request for cleaning of a guest cabin bathroom," Carnival said in a statement. "Aside from that there have been no reports of issues on board with overflowing toilets or sewage."

Carnival, perhaps still sensitive to the reports of Triumph passengers using plastic bags as toilets a few weeks ago, was eager to relay that point to journalists flocking to cover the outage.

The malfunction at St. Maarten, perhaps predictably, did not hit well with the public.

Then there were those who had family and friends aboard.

Some passengers on the boat were also tweeting about their ordeal.

Other passengers were less glib.

Another user, @SuttonDaButton, had words for Carnival too strong to quote here.

Interest in the Carnival passengers' fates remained strong with the media, especially after one particularly innocuous Tweet:

The interview requests then poured in:

Poor Josh indeed.

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matt.pearce@latimes.com

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