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Dozens Injured on Crown Princess

July 19, 2006 By: Susan Young Travel Agent

Ninety-three passengers were injured onboard the new 113,000-ton Crown Princess on Tuesday, after a steering problem caused the ship to "list" or roll abruptly to its port side shortly after departing Port Canaveral, FL at about 3:25 p.m. on Tuesday. Most of those injured had bruises and minor back and neck injuries, but Princess in a statement also said "initial reports are that a number of passengers did sustain serious injuries." Two victims were airlifted to Florida hospitals. Many of the injured were reported to be elderly. Passengers reported that water from the swimming pool flooded several upper decks, breaking windows and furniture along the way. The vessel was returning to New York after a nine-day Caribbean cruise with about 3,100 passengers and a crew of 1,200 onboard. The ship "righted itself" before returning to port and all passengers were accounted for, according to the U.S. Coast Guard. Princess ended the cruise in Port Canaveral, and was arranging to fly the guests home from Florida. Passengers will receive a full refund by Princess and reimbursement for additional expenses. Spokeswoman Julie Benson said the line regretted the incident and was trying to make passengers as comfortable as possible under difficult circumstances. She also said an investigation was underway, the cause of the sudden list was unknown, and that the watertight integrity of the ship was never compromised. The ship is expected to remain in port for several days while Princess assesses repairs.

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