Tug Boat Reaches Carnival Splendor, May Tow to San Diego

In an update on Tuesday night, Carnival Cruise Lines said one tug boat has reached the stricken Carnival Splendor, which is operating on auxiliary power after a fire in the ship's engine room earlier this week. Additional tugs are en route, the line said.

No one was hurt in the fire, but various hotel systems on the ship including air conditioning are not operational. The line has terminated the ship's Mexican Riviera cruise.

Originally, the line had planned to have the ship towed to Ensenada, Mexico where passengers could disembark. But given the ship’s speed and current position, Carnival said it hopes to instead take the vessel to San Diego where it is expected to arrive late Thursday.

But the line's statement also noted: "If the ship is unable to maintain sufficient speed under tow, it is possible that we could revert to the previous plan and dock in Ensenada."

Additionally, Carnival said it is in the process of making all the necessary hotel and flight arrangements for guests. Carnival earlier had apologized for the situation -- stating it will refund cruise fares, reimburse passengers for transportation charges and give them a complimentary future cruise.

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