Source: Cruise Junkie dot Com

Events at Sea by Explorer of the Seas

Events by Ship:
Click her for Illness Outbreaks by Explorer of the Seas

Click here for Illness Outbreaks by Royal Caribbean International
Click here for Environmental Events and Fines by Royal Caribbean International (RCCL)
Click here to return to Events by ... Index Page

The events listed have been reported in the public domain or to cruisejunkie by passengers or crew members onboard.  The list is by no means comprehensive.  For that reason it is necessary to be cautious in drawing conclusions from the potentially limited data.  Keep in mind that some companies may be more transparent than others about things that go wrong; conversely, some companies may be better at concealing events and thereby project an appearance that is inaccurate.  With that said, the following list is still interesting, as are the patterns seen viewed separately by ship.

11.8.10 Royal Gazette reports a passenger was fined after ship security staff smelled burned marijuana outside his room. Patrick Gallo, 27, from New York, pleaded guilty to importing cannabis to the Island and possessing the drug and paid a $1500 fine. According to Crown counsel, security officers were walking outside the cabin on Saturday when they smelt cannabis and decided to initiate a search. Inside the room, they found the man holding a partially burned hand-rolled cigarette. A further search of the room found a second partially smoked cigarette and another bag with plant like material. A total of 2.5 grams of cannabis were found in his cabin.
Drug arrest

From a reader: A family member on the ship told me last evening (5/5)that the ship's captain informed all passengers through an announcement that a crew member had climbed over a railing and jumped at 8:15 PM (local time). They circled for approximately 2 hours with all available ship personnel assisting in search. No passengers were allowed outside during this time. At approximately 12:23 AM this morning (eastern standard time) the ship headed back to its last port of call (San Juan) in an effort to locate missing crew person. A passenger wrote: Eight hours after we left Puerto Rico the bridge came on announcement and asked if anyone has seen a man named Santiago and if they knew anything about him; then about 30mins later they came on again and said a crew member had lowered himself in the water from deck 5 at 8:13pm then around 8:30 we turned around and went to the spot where he had jumped from and searched til 7AM when the Coast Guard finally got there and gave us the ok to leave which caused a 7 hour delay to return back to Cape Liberty, NJ. The missing crew member is 27 years old. The ship will apparently return to Bayonne, NJ more than eight hours late on Saturday. Passengers on the next sailing are advised to not arrive at the cruise terminal earlier than 7:30PM.

Crew member overboard

From a passenger (re: 26 Feb sailing): We have been triggered in writing this as a result of the the cruise line not coming forward themselves. When it occurred we were informed that this was a freak incident. We have subsequently found out that this is totally untrue. It was due partially due to human error that on 2/28 at 4am the ship tilted 45 degrees - Guest lodging on level 3 were under water, the Promenade was a titantic disaster, crew quickly left stations to report to lifeboat staions, tvs crashing, objects in cabins flying around. At 4:30am the Captain addresses the passengers and admitted to "losing control of the ship- but they were back in control" The tilt lasted a good two and a half minutes. Passengers were brought for care while in Puerto Rico. From another passenger: The info on your site about the serious damage and injured pax due to a 45 degree list for 2 minutes is false. I was actually was a 10 - 12 degree list for several seconds. NO DAMAGE to the ship...NO ONE evacuated in San Juan. The list was due to a 100 MPH wind gust and the wind switched from forward to starboard in seconds. It wasn't a Titanic disaster; just lots of broken booze bottles in the store. The problem was caused by the auto piloy (a computer) which was knocked out for a minute when the wind changed. And another passenger writes: The truth is in the first comment. At the Captains Q&A on 3/3 he and the crew admitted to partial human error (Pilot over compnesated when trying to starighten boat out). Elderly passengers and others were taken to the hospital in San Juan due to this incident. I was there as they were being removed from ship. It did last over 2 minutes (the tilt) -- enough time for me to get clothes/shoes on and to report to lifeboat station. Onboard staff did head to life stations for asistance. The promenade did not "only have broken liquor bottles" -- everything was all over. The staff reacted to emergency response so quickly- they left the vacuum cleaners they were running on and in place. I am not sure what the last comment was - but it leads me to believe they were not quite awake for the whole ordeal. No one mentioned damage to the ship, but friends on Deck 3 outside window cabin knew they were underwater. As per a ship employee- they were told to keep all quiet. That is not fair to the cruising community. Hopefully this is not someone trying to cover up the situation. Did they hear the exasperated Captain making his announcement? Were they at the Q&A where passengers were relentless for the truth of the matter? Editorial comment: You have to decide for yourself which account is correct -- I know which I believe.

Extreme list - damage
13.1.10 RCI issued a statement that the ship's departure from dry dock in Freeport, Bahamas was delayed. Because of this, it is expected to arrive in Bayonne, New Jersey on Thursday, January 14 later than originally scheduled. Guests are asked to not arrive at the port before 3:00 p.m., but no later than 7:00 p.m. The delayed departure is not expected to have an impact on the scheduled itinerary.
Delayed departure
3.9.09 The Royal Gazette reports dozens of tourists were stranded in St. George's with their cruise ship leaving in mere hours after a ferry encountered technical problems. According to a statement from the Department of Marine and Ports, on Monday the 1 p.m. ferry scheduled to travel from St. Georges to Dockyard encountered a "mechanical problem," forcing it to return to the depot. Many tourists were reportedly concerned that they would not be able to return to the Explorer of the Seas, which was in port in Dockyard and scheduled to leave the Island at 5 p.m. A spokesperson for the department said yesterday: "The 3 p.m. ferry operated as regularly scheduled and all passengers were able to board and were transported to the Explorer of the Seas. There were no passengers left behind." While the Department of Marine and Ports say that the vehicles are still getting serviced on a regular schedule, at least one ferry-goer said that the ferries, some of which have been active since the spring of 2002, are looking worse every day. "The problems have been there a long time, and it's been getting progressively worse," said the businessman, who asked not to be identified. "More than one third of the seats are in need of repair. On one of the ferries both of the toilets are out of order and more than one of the ferries belches black smoke when the engines are revved." While locals often take to the lower level, which is better maintained, visitors more commonly take to the upper deck, which is more affected by the issues." Ferry troubles in Bermuda

From a passenger: The June 11 saling from Bayonne has changed its itinerary. It now arrives in St. Marteen at 2:00 and leaves at 10:00 PM (Was 12:00-9:00). But the worst is San Juan - it arrives at 10:00 pm and leaves 11:30 AM Docked (Was 7AM - 2PM one day). These are minor changes but it really effects the shore excursions. Many passangers are upset because RCCI announced the change right after the final payment was due without an explaintion. From a Reader: The April 11 post about RCCL's change in itinerary is not the only change, my sailing on May 28 th has been changed also, to the one you have posted for june 11, in fact, if you go to their web page and look at the 6 or so sailings planned, they have all been changed to the  the June  11  trip as posted.

Itinerary change
13.2.09 From a passenger: Aboard the Explorer of the Seas Feb 13 voyage from Bayonne, NJ.   At boarding we were informed that since the ship is unable to cruise at 22 Knots, and will, instead, make only 20 Knots, the schedule has been adjusted slightly.  The most significant change is in San Juan where the ship will be in port from 7AM until 11:30AM. No details or further explanations have been given.
Propulsion problems
5.2.09 The Miami Herald reports the ship was leaving Samana, Dominican Republic, on January 29 when a propeller on one of the ship's engines struck an unidentified object and was bent. The 11-day cruise skipped its last port call in Labadee, Haiti, and returned to Cape Liberty, N.J., on February 1. The present cruise skipped its port call in San Juan, Puerto Rico, and is now en route to St. Thomas, where divers will repair the propeller today. The St. Thomas port call has been extended six hours to 11 p.m. Thursday. From a passenger: The incident occurred at dinner time and vibration was noted by several people. We were well within the buoyed channel. We were compensated $ 100 per person by the line and extra activities were planned by the crew.  On the 30th, the ship stopped near Turks and Caicos and allowed to drift for over an hour while divers were sent down. They inspected and photographed the propeller and then came back on board. I am a radio enthusiast and heard them say there was damage to the blades. We then proceeded home at reduced speed.
Damaged propeller
28.12.08 Antigua Sun reports two passengers were allegedly robbed of US$200, their hand bags, credit cards and passports at Fort James beach. This is the second incident in a matter of weeks affecting the cruise sector. After the passengers were robbed, the taxi driver who was transporting them reportedly attempted to catch the thief but was unsuccessful.
Robbery ashore
The ship skipped Charlottetown purportedly because of approaching Hurricane Kyle. However, the weather during the day had winds of 22km and less (14 mph) and cloudy skies. The ship instead sailed to the St. Lawrence and spent an overnight in Quebec CIty.
Skipped port
The port call at Bermuda was cancelled because of a medical emergency that required the ship to head back toward the New Jersey coast so it would be in range for a helicopter rescue by the Coast Guard. As a consequence, the itinerary now included an extra day and night at sea.
Port call cancelled
A passenger reports there was an outbreak of gastrointestinal illness in the first half of the 12 day cruise from New Jersey to the Eastern Caribbean. On its return to Cape Liberty, the ship encountered a violent storm, waves in excess of 25 feet, and gale force winds-force 11) -- this data was reported on our stateroom TV’s (channels 41 or 15). The captain had warned us the day prior that we would be following the storm, but this was not the case-we were in the middle of it. In a question and answer period with some of the officers on Feb. 14, including the assistant captain, he mentioned we had the misfortune of passing through 2 cold fronts and the gulf stream within the same day. The rough sea conditions lasted for 12 hours. The ship was rocking side to side, elevators were padded in the event of injury, waitstaff in the dining areas reported feeling dizzy and ill, plates were dropping, and 2 elevators that day were out of service. Extremely Heavy Seas
Passengers were notified today that the port call at Belize City was cancelled (the ship wasapparently behind schedule given the need to return to Miami for a medical emergency six hours after leaving on December 17, even though the Captain said they'd make up the time).  They were told instead the ship would stop at Cozumel for 19 hours, go to Grand Cayman, Costa Maya and then back to Miami.  On December 20 passengers were told that Costa Maya could not accommodate the ship so the ship woould dock at Montego Bay instead.  According to passengers, "shore excursions were disorganized and the crew were as misinformed as the passengers."  One passenger writes:  We had to tender at Cozumel the first day, then we were able to pull onto the dock when the Freedom of the Seas left, but then had to back out again when the Enchantment arrived at 9AM the next morning.  The confusion caused HUGE lines for tendering, and I personally felt like a second-class citizen being bumped out of the dock like that.  (For a sister ship!!!)  Grand Cayman was a joke, I'm sorry I ever left the ship.  Our ship made the 6th, yes that's 6 ships tendered at the tiny island of Grand Cayman.  Needless to say, the shore excursions were all booked, and crowded, and once again, the line to tender was ridiculous.   Itinerary changes
From a passenger (in letter to Cayman Islands officials):  I visited Grand Cayman on the Explorer of the Seas and was transported to shore via a locally operated tender.  I write because of the huge environmental disregard shown by the tender I was on (“Carib Hawk”).  I stood at the back of the boat during the trip and noticed an excessive amount of what looked to be oil being dumped into the ocean from the boat’s motor.  This is unacceptable and must not be allowed.  I talked to the captain of another boat about the matter and he told me that the Ministry of Environment had been in the area investigating a similar matter the day before, and also confirmed that the oil-dumping was not normal when I showed him the pictures I took through my digital cameraThe pictures may be viewed here.
2005 and earlier
Posted at Cruise Critic:  After we left Miami on Sunday, at about 10pm, we felt a loud noise, like an explosion, and. the ship tilted to one side ...  It went like that for about 10 minutes, I was in the Aquarium Bar , and the water from the aquarium started coming out from the top of the aquarium in the side that we were leaning to. Anything that was not tied down fell on the floor, including many bottles and stuff in the gift shop. We asked around but the anwsers we got made no sense. Scary, scary, scary. The incident appears to have been caused by a stabilizer being retracted at a faster than normal rate.  Unexpected list
A Holland America L:ine employee working at Half Moon Cay "borrowed" a jet ski and with 4 others took a spin to Cat Island.  He became detached from the others on the return and became lost.  He was reportedly adrift for two days or more before he was spotted and rescued by the cruise ship.
Rescue st sea
A cleaning crew discovered a minor fire at the aft end of Deck 13.  The fire was extinguished 13 minutes later, causing damage to the inline skating facility amd yje top of the waterslide on Deck 12.  Those facilities will be closed for repair.  Go here for photos provided by a passenger.
A man jumped from the balcony on deck 8 into the sea after having an argument with his wife.   The ship was about 1.5 miles from St. Thomas.  The Coast Guard responded to a call at 9PM and the man was rescued alive.
Rescued alive

Illness Outbreaks at Sea by Explorer of the Seas

Reported Illness Outbreaks
On April 30, the ship reported that 15 of 1188 (1.26%) crew and 117 of 3292 (3.6%) passengers were ill.  The predominant symptoms were vomiting and diarrhea.  The 7 day cruise arrived in Miami, from where it left on April 23.
On February 28, 2006, RCI reported to the CDC  that an elevated number of Explorer of the Seas passengers and crew were experiencing symptoms consistent with acute gastroenteritis.  On March 4, the ship reported that 19 of 1184 (1.60%) crew were and 243 of 3252 (7.47%) passengers were ill. The predominant symptoms are diarrhea and vomiting.  The cruise began February 26 and ends March 5 in Miami.
From a passenger:  I just got off of that cruise. About 25 out of the 60 in our group was sick. There were also a lot more people sick than they stated. I was recovering waiting in the nurses station on Tuesday when they declared it an epidemic and that the ship was on red alert.  The last bit I had heard was that there were close to 400 cabins listed as under a 24 hour quarantine by Wednesday.  People we talked to had stopped reporting to the infirmary for fear of not being able to disembark on any of the islands when they were feeling better.

Illness Outbreaks by Ship: