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River Cruise Cancelled Following Barge Collision

August 23, 2010
Viking Kirov
(5:45 p.m.) -- Viking River Cruises has cancelled the next cruise for Viking Kirov, the Russian river ship that was left with a hole after it collided with a barge last week.

Viking's Senior Vice President of Marketing, Richard Marnell, told Cruise Critic that all impacted passengers were contacted and were accommodated in a variety of ways, mostly in the form of refunds and future cruise credits, though he would not offer specifics. Viking Kirov is expected to be ready for its next scheduled cruise, which departs on September 3.

None of the 111 passengers were injured in the incident, and Marnell added that "the damage was done, essentially, to only a couple of the crew cabins."

Cruise Critic member Scudrunner was onboard during the collision and posts this first-hand account: "I was awakened at 3:00 AM with a bump and a loud scrape ... It wasn't until sunrise until we could see the barge that hit us broadside. The water outside my cabin was filled with every type of maritime policeman, water authority, military, reporters all taking pictures with their cell phones." Scudrunner also addresses reports that passengers refused to travel on a lower-class ship; a group of people didn't want to board a wet transfer boat for fear of ruining their belongings.

The ship is currently being repaired at small Russian shipyard outside of Moscow.

--by Dan Askin, Associate Editor

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