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Date Published: August 17, 2009
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Storm Update: Downgraded Ana's Cruise Impact
(10:30 a.m. EDT) -- Tropical Storm Ana was downgraded to a tropical depression Sunday evening. Maximum sustained winds are near 35 miles per hour, and the National Hurricane Center forecasts that the storm could dissipate today. Having already rerouted a handful of cruise ships, the storm, currently located about 70 miles south of St. Croix, is expected to reach the Dominican Republic later today and produce two to four inches of rainfall as it sweeps through the Caribbean.

A tropical storm watch is still in effect for Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, the British Virgin Island, St. Kitts, Nevis, St. Maarten, St. Barth's, the Dominican Republic and other islands in the region.

Cruise Ship Itinerary Changes

According to spokespersons from the lines, a few itinerary changes have been made for Princess Cruises' and Carnival Cruise Lines' ships. Here are the details:

Caribbean Princess: Departed from New York on Thursday and was scheduled to call in San Juan on Monday, St. Thomas on Tuesday and Grand Turk on Wednesday. According to Princess spokesperson Karen Candy, instead Caribbean Princess will visit Grand Turk on Monday and avoid its other two port calls completely. It will spend a day at sea on Tuesday, and call at Nassau on Wednesday and Port Canaveral on Thursday.

Carnival Freedom: Departed from Ft. Lauderdale Saturday and called at Nassau Sunday, rather than spending the day at sea. It will push back a visit to San Juan to Tuesday and spend the day at sea on Monday. The ship will visit St. Thomas Wednesday in lieu of Antigua, and the call in Tortola will happen as scheduled on Thursday. Two days at sea round out the new itinerary, and the scheduled call in Nassau on Friday will be skipped, as the ship already docked there on Sunday.

According to Carnival's Web site, Carnival Glory, Carnival Liberty and Carnival Victory are all back to sailing their original itineraries; before the storm was downgraded, the line published revised itineraries for these ships.

Weather Outlook: Next Affected Ships & Ports

Royal Caribbean also has several cruise ships in the area, but there is no word from the line yet regarding altered itineraries. Further itinerary changes are not expected, unless the storm picks back up.

--by Kim Kazell, Assistant Editor

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