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U.S. Coast Guard Issues Final Report on Carnival Splendor Fire

July 15, 2013 By: Susan Young


Photo by Susan J. Young

After a long, exhaustive investigation, the U.S. Coast Guard has issued the final acccident report on the Carnival Splendor's fire of 2010. The ship was sailing off the west coast of Mexico in 2010 when a fire broke out in an engine room.

The crew put out the fire but the ship lost power and had to be towed back to southern California. The Maritime Executive has written an article about the report, which agents may read here:

The Maritime Executive story provides a link to the 51-page U.S. Coast Guard report that details all the findings. One critical finding? A 15-minute delay in activating a Hi-Fog  system gave the fire time to spread. That knocked out the power and disabled the ship. A full list of key findings, with Carnival's updated responses, is available here:

Meanwhile, Carnival Cruise Lines ( released its own statement late Monday; here is that statement in its entirety:

"Today, the U.S. Coast Guard released a report detailing the findings of its investigation into the fire that took place on Carnival Splendor more than two and a half years ago in November 2010. We appreciate the work of the U.S. Coast Guard in its investigation and provided our full cooperation and support during that process.

"As a result of Carnival’s own investigation and our ongoing commitment to continuous improvement in all aspects of our operations, we have already implemented numerous actions throughout our fleet. We look forward to reviewing today’s published report in greater detail.

"In late 2010, Carnival Cruise Lines launched its own comprehensive investigation with the involvement of multiple third-party experts. We agree with the U.S. Coast Guard’s conclusions surrounding fire detection and firefighting processes and took numerous actions throughout our fleet as a result, including the creation of a Fire Safety Task Force.

"Those efforts resulted in the implementation and enhancements of a number of processes, training and equipment, as well as the formation of a new Marine Safety department. These actions directly contributed to the rapid detection and suppression of the fire on Carnival Triumph in February of 2013.

"Additionally, on April 17 of this year, the company announced a $300 million fleet-wide enhancement program that is currently underway to significantly enhance emergency power capabilities, further strengthen existing fire safety systems by installing the most advanced technology available, and improve the level of operating redundancies across our entire 24-ship fleet.

"Carnival Cruise Lines has maintained an excellent safety record throughout our 41-year history. All of Carnival Cruise Lines’ ships operate safely and meet or exceed all regulatory requirements. There were no injuries as a direct result of the Carnival Splendor or Triumph incidents and, at Carnival, the safety and comfort of our guests is our paramount focus.

"We look forward to the opportunity to review the U.S. Coast Guard report in detail to fully examine the findings and recommendations."



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About the Author

Susan Young
A veteran of 100-plus cruises, Susan J. Young, is senior contributing editor for cruises – covering ocean, river and niche cruises for Travel Agent and

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By Susan Young | July 15, 2013
The United States Coast Guard has issued its final accident investigation report into the fire that crippled the Carnival Splendor off the West Coast in 2010. Carnival released a statement addressing the agency's safety findings.
Filed under : Cruises, ocean cruises