Two separate shipyard fires have damaged Emerald Waterways' Emerald Belle and AIDA Cruises' AIDA Prima.
A late Sunday night fire at the Den Breejen Shipyard in the Netherlands damaged the Emerald Belle, which is currently under construction. Emerald's sister line, Scenic, also had a ship under construction nearby, but it was quickly moved away so damage was confined to exterior paint, Emerald Waterways reports.
“Despite the efforts of firefighters, who were quickly at the scene, the damage is significant," said Glen Moroney, chairman of the Scenic Group, which owns the Emerald Waterways line, in a written release. "We are grateful and relieved that nobody was onboard at the time and most importantly, there were no injuries to any shipyard worker or firefighters.”
The Emerald Belle, which was due to launch in April, has sustained significant damage that the line said may delay the launch date. Emerald Waterways said its operations and reservations teams are reviewing all bookings to see if guests can be accommodated on similar Emerald or, possibly, Scenic departures.
While there has been no confirmed cause of the fire, a full investigation by the yard and firefighting authorities is underway.
The line has said it will notify travel agents in the next few days to discuss options. A dedicated webpage (evergreentours.com.au/emeraldbelle) will provide ongoing updates on the affected sailings.
AIDA Prima Fire
AIDA Prima, a new ship for Carnival Corp.'s AIDA Cruises brand, was damaged by a fire early Sunday at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Ltd.’s shipyard in Nagasaki, the Japan Times reports. The fire, which is the third to strike at the shipyard in January, is reportedly being investigated as an arson.
The fire was quickly extinguished, and no injuries were reported. It follows an electrical fire near a theater space on January 11, and a fire in a cabin involving a piece of cloth that took place January 13.
AIDA Prima is set to be the new flagship for AIDA Cruises. Its most recent launch date was April of this year.
Keep visiting www.travelagentcentral.com for further updates on this developing story.