Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Triumph Fire Investigation

Photo courtesy U.S. Coast Guard
Carnival Triumph
Fire Investigtion

Coast Guard investigators from the Coast Guard Marine Safety Center and the Investigations Center of Expertise examine the cruise ship Carnival Triumph's engine room, Feb. 14, 2013, to determine the cause of a fire that broke out Feb. 10 and stranded the ship with its passengers for days in the Gulf of Mexico. The results of the joint international investigation may take months, but could possibly help prevent the same type of incident from happening in the future. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Lt. Jerry Federer)

The U.S. Coast Guard and the National Transportation Safety Board launched an investigation into the circumstances surrounding a fire aboard the Carnival Triumph, that ocurred Sunday, February 10, 2013. Because the Carnival Triumph is a Bahamian flagged vessel, the Bahamas Maritime Authority is the primary investigative agency. In accordance with international guidelines, the U.S. will participate in this investigation as a Marine Safety Investigative State.

Preliminary Results 

In a statement released to the media on Monday by the U.S. Coast Guard, the fire on the Carnival Triumph cruise ship was caused by a leak in a fuel oil return line. The complete investigation will last approximately six months according to the USCG.

The leak appears to have been in an oil return line that stretches from the ship's No. 6 engine to the fuel tank. Based on the ignition marks on the wall, the fire broke out in front of one of three generators in the engine room. It will take at least a week before determining if this was the same generator that had mechanical issues in January.

Legal Proceedings

As the investigation continues, so too begins legal proceedings that seem to follow incidents like this. To date there have been two lawsuits filed by passengers on the Carnival Triumph. We will follow both of these developing stories and update you periodically as information is released to the public.

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