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Norwegian cruises: Viking Sky cruise passengers tell the difficult hours aboard a stranded vessel



Through the large frames that were on Viking Sky, passengers on Saturday afternoon saw the gray waves and the horizon when their massive ships with 1,373 people were overwhelmed by the sea.

Outside a storm in rough, free water from the north west coast, the British bound cruise ship had surrounded with 26 foot waves and 43 mph wind forces.

Inside, the ship's engines had failed, putting the ship in Hustadvika Bay and towards the rocky shoreline. Plants, piano and living room met across the floor with every slope of the ship. Roof panels fell to the ground and ice-cold water crashed through broken windows.

"It was frightening at first," said passenger Alexus Sheppard, who submitted videos online within the ship, to the Associated Press. "And when the general alarm sounded really right."

The crew threw an anchor and released a Monday call. Then the waiting time began.

For 24 hours, they were aboard ̵

1; a mixture of American, British, Canadian, New Zealand and Australian citizens – violent conditions that rescue teams worked to evacuate passengers one by one. Smaller rescue boats were not a safe alternative because of the dangerously high swings, so the Norwegian authorities moved individual passengers from the ship.

Reuters reported that chief of police Hans Vik, who is the head of the joint rescue coordination center in southern Norway, told TV2 that the ship was operating within 330 meters of the coast before the crew could start a motor again.

"If they had run due, we would have faced a great disaster," Vik TV2 told us.

Passenger Rodney Horgen, Minnesota resident, told the AP that he was a weather fisherman and had never experienced anything like the conditions aboard the Viking Sky.

Horgen said a half-meter water wall broke through a door and window and swept with passengers, including his wife, Judie Lemieux, 30 meters above the floor.

"It was breaker. I told myself," This is it, "Horgen says to the AP." I grabbed my wife, but I couldn't go on. And she was thrown over the room. And then she was thrown back again by the wave that came back. "

Will the conditions of the water's power and temperature – and what it would do for a person being thrown overboard – were" very very scary, "said the Horgen

" You wouldn't be long, "he said. ] The journey was a pilgrimage of varieties for Horgen, who looked forward to visiting his ancestral home.

The cruise was scheduled to pass through the Norwegian cities of Narvik, Alta, Tromso, Bodo and Stavanger before they end up in the British port of Tilbury on Thames on Tuesday

Passengers Janet Jacob told NRK that she was among the first groups of Passengers to be evacuated by helicopter. The strong winds were "like a tornado", she said and she asked "for the safety of everyone on board" "I was scared," she said. "I have never experienced anything so scary."

John Curry, an American passenger who ate lunch when the ship began to shake, told the NRK that the incident was "chaos" and to h an "would rather not think about

Viking Cruises chairman Torstein Hagen told TV2 that the passengers had had" a little shocking experience ".

"It wasn't nice," he said. "Most of our passengers are older … imagine what it's like to hang on that thread," says Hagen. "It must be a horrible experience, but they seem to have handled it very well."

The Red Cross told for Reuters that even those who were not physically injured have "been traumatized by the experience" and demanded care on the beach

Viking Cruises told Reuters in a statement that the guests lived in local hotels and that the company arranged flights for them to return to their

Panic friends and family members of passengers took social media, seeking information on Some loved ones, including Sheppard, documented the entire rescue service, shared photos, videos and social media observations.

Sheppard shared pictures of people sleeping on the floor and using life jackets as pillows.

At 10 Sunday time, three of the ship's four engines worked and the ship with 436 guests and 458 crew members were about to dry land, said Viking Ocean Cruises in a statement. A total of 479 passengers had fled and 20 people were injured and treated in hospitals in Norway.

When the ship headed towards Molde in a calmer ocean, Sheppard washed a video of dozens of passengers moving around the same bright orange life jackets.

"People are so bored," she said, "they repackage the life jackets."

On Sunday afternoon, the ship was driving in Molde, Norway.

Hagen told Norway's VG magazine that the Viking Sky rescue was among the most difficult events where he has been involved.

"We've been lucky," he said.


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