A large wave slammed into the Clelia II cruise ship, which is operated by Travel Dynamics International of New York. The vessel was carrying 165 people – 77 crew members and 88 US passengers – at the time of the incident. More than half of the crew were from the Philippines, while the rest were from varies countries around the world. However, the ship and its crew overcame the minor damage and were heading safely back to port as scheduled on Wednesday.
On Tuesday, an emergency was declared by the Clelia II. They reported suffering engine damage due to heavy seas and 55mph winds while off the northeast coast of the South Shetland Islands. The pilot said that he had never seen such weather in his 160 trips to the Antarctic peninsula, where they were hit with a 30 foot wave.
In a statement from the International Association of Antarctica Tour Operators, the agency said the wave caused a broken bridge window and some electrical issues that knocked out some of the ship’s communications and affected engine performance. Despite the situation, the association noted, no one was injured for the exception of minor injuries sustained by a crew member. The National Geographic Explorer, another vessel, accompanied the Clelia II for a lot of the day and helped to restore its communications, they continued. The ship was heading for the port of Ushuaia, which is at Argentina’s extreme southern point, they added, they were moving at normal speed by midday Wednesday and in no danger.
The Clelia II started traveling to Ushuaia on November 30 and had been scheduled to return yesterday. The vessel is owned by Piraeus, Greece-based Helios Shipping.