|Graphic Courtesy of NOOA|
On April 20th a fire and explosion occurred in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico involving a Transocean drilling Rig Deep Water Horizon. The Horizon was engaged in drilling activity on behalf of BP at Mississippi Canyon Block 252, about 52 miles southeast of Venice, La. Of the 126-member crew, 115 were safely evacuated. Despite exhaustive rescue efforts, eleven crew members lost their lives, nine of which were Transocean employees. Our thoughts and prayers go out to those families and to the entire community which is engaged in the response to this event.
Since that time, the world has watched as the equivalent of 5,000 barrels of oil a day continues to gush out into the Gulf. Indications are that this could be the worst environmental disaster to date. The difference between this incident and other oil spills is that the source of the oil flow comes from the ocean floor and will continue until it can be plugged. In previous incidents, the source of oil was a container which would eventually be empty.
Many companies, local, and federal agencies are working closely together in response to this event. For the latest information, consult the
We will continue to provide updates on this developing story and inform you of any impact to the cruise industry as well as the environmental impact.
Resources & Updated News
U.S. EPA: Federal Response to BP Spill in the Gulf of Mexico
U.S. Coast Guard: Gulf of Mexico - Deepwater Horizon Incident
NOOA: Deepwater Horizon Incident, Gulf of Mexico
Offshore Alabama Update on the Oil Spill (Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce)
BP Read the latest press release
NASA: Earth Observatory Images
Updates for Cruise Ship Passengers
So far, the ports of New Orleans and Mobile have not been impacted by the oil spill. The Carnival Triumph is scheduled to arrive in the Port of New Orleans today and sail out again for their next cruise. Carnival Cruise Line will continue to monitor this situation over the weekend to assess if there will be any disruption to the Carnival Fantasy cruise departing on Monday, May 3rd from Mobile, AL.
Port of New Orleans. LA Mississippi River Ship Traffic Not Affected by Oil Spill
Carnival Cruise Line: Travel Advisory (Port of Mobile)
Port of Mobile, AL Press Release: Port of Mobile Open to Vessel Traffic