"Despite being hit by a freak wave more than 20 metres high, the Norwegian Dawn has suffered damage only to a small forward area of her superstructure and not at all to the watertight hull structure. The design and strength of the ship, as Star and Norwegian Cruise Line ("NCL") were already aware, are well above the normal standard and the evidence this past weekend is that this model of ship is able to withstand without damage the most severe wind and wave conditions likely to be encountered by a modern cruise ship.
"The damage that did occur was mainly confined to the forward areas of two passenger decks on Decks 9 and 10. The windows of two forward facing cabins on each of these two decks were broken by the force of the wave. Subsequently a large volume of water flooded into these two cabins and spread out to neighboring cabins from there. In total, 62 cabins were affected by this volume of water spreading out from the breached cabins. Four passengers in total were injured, with cuts from broken glass being the major injury. All were treated immediately at the ship's onboard hospital and were quickly released again. A little over a third of passengers from the flooded cabins chose to terminate their cruise in Charleston, South Carolina where the ship docked for emergency repairs to the broken windows. Roughly 90 percent of all passengers chose to stay with the ship and sail back to New York.
"Other minor structural damage: a frame underneath the spare anchor that lies on the foredeck, in front of passenger areas, has been bent by the force of this spare anchor (carried on deck) hitting the flat deck during the heavy seas.
"The number one priority at all times was the safety of the passengers, crew and ship, and the integrity of the vessel was not, at any time, in any way compromised or in danger."