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Home > Cruise News Archive > Cruise Passengers, Others Speak Out About Life Onboard Carnival Splendor
Date Published: November 11, 2010
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Cruise Passengers, Others Speak Out About Life Onboard Carnival Splendor
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(11:35 a.m. EST) -- Carnival Splendor has now arrived in San Diego, and while snippets of life onboard the disabled ship began to emerge Wednesday night, reports are likely to trickle in more steadily once passengers have disembarked.

Here's a sampling of what passengers and others who made it onto the ship, or heard from those on the ship have to say:

Cruise Critic member hlhp3 said, "It is true that some people were okay but the elderly, those that needed there meds kept cold, those that got injured and could get no help from the doctors who had no ice, electricity, no x-rays; those who missed their own weddings in Mexico, those who had power scooters that could not be recharged, those who did not understand English and were confused and scared, - they suffered. It was very, very bad. Rotting food and garbage and full toilets. A CDC worst case scenario. The crew was unbelievably amazing. I get emotional thinking about what they went through. I know they were served much worse food then us. Many people tipped them cash too. In short- don't make statements about the conditions unless you were there and even then you must understand that everyone's experience was different depending on their health, age, stateroom level, inner or outer cabin, and toilet situation- to name a few. I know for me it will take a while to forget the morning I out of my 2nd floor room and saw the hallway full of smoke and was told to evacuate. Or the 2 hour lines only to find pickled beet and mayo sandwiches for my four kids."

"Hubby and I got home last night from this Splendor disaster cruise ... We also had a balcony room which really helped with the fresh air, smell though our toliet was one of the last to be fixed, we needed the air. It helped a lot with daylight, felt real sorry for inside cabin passengers and eldery. We almost always take the stairs so that part didn't bother us but some could not handle the walking well at all. Really missed coffee and hot food but glad it wasn't worse and did not want to take a bus from Ensenda which is what they told us we would be doing first, before plans were changed to San Diego (much better, safer option ) getting full refund and a free cruise, got free pics on board, free booze, bottled water all we wanted, the crew really worked their butts off," said Cruise Critic member criticschoicecards.

Cruise Critic member, Kailin who was onboard the ship said, "Carnival kept us fed and entertained as best they could. Imagine having been told that they had to feed 3300 people without electricity, and giving us 3 square meals a day fixed by hand. Imagine the crew members creating chains throughout the decks, and up the stairs, to make sure that boxes of food and bottled water got to the 9th floor Lido Deck from the third floor galley. No we did not have Spam, though we did have poptarts this morning. The confiscated liquor were returned last night. They kept us calm and updated frequently. The cabin stewards still came by and cleaned our rooms as best they could without electricity. The crew members always had a smile for us. I got to know my fellow cabin neighbors as we would hang out at night in the hall ways were there was light and just talk. Although this was not the cruise I had planned, I connected with my fellow travelers and the crew, all of which were friendly and supportive. While I have memories of monuments, museums and panoramic views from past cruises; this cruise I have fond memories of the many wonderful people I met."

"Just got off the splendor and don't believe everything you hear on the news. There were food and the toilets worked for most people after the 1st 12 hrs. Carnival did a great job taking care of us and the crew were wonderful. Our cabin staff worked around the clock. Granted it wasn't steak and lobsters and the food was certainly not as bad as what everyone has been saying," said Cruise Critic member flyorange.

"To be honest I had fun! We made some really good friends and most people had a lot of fun too. There will always be some people who wanna take advantage of the situation and shame on them. Some people were so drunk on free alcohol that they couldn't find their own rooms. Overall we are really happy with the way carnival handled the situation and the crew couldn't have been better. The cruise director was hilarious and added lots of laughters in such serious situation," he said.

From Cruise Critic member AZ GIRL, who posted on Cruise Critic's message boards that he received a phone call from his wife: "She said 'This is a cruise from HELL!' ... She said there is no light in her cabin, toilet only got restored yesterday and stinks beyond belief. People are hoarding food, taking platefuls." The call was abbreviated, he added, because "she needs to conserve her cell battery because there is nowhere to plug in for power."

Passenger John Vest told the Los Angeles Times, that the ongoing joke onboard "was that there was going to be 'a lot of babies born in the next nine months.'"

From Splendor cruise director John Heald, who posted this on his blog: "I have often written that in cases of unexpected occurrences on a cruise ship that it is the cruise director's job to inform the guests, truthfully at all times and to do so calmly and reassuringly and as often as possible. This is the CD's role and although it cannot be compared to the people who were currently in the engine room and on the bridge, it is none the less an important one and I can only hope that I managed to achieve the goals I have just described."

"When a crew member gets on a ship, whatever his or her position onboard, before they are bar waiters or dancers or photographers or stateroom stewards………each and every crew member is a sailor whose primary task is the safety of the guests and themselves. Each of us has a station or assignment to go to and all are well trained in what needs to be done," he said.

From photojournalist Richard Klein, who is traveling with the U.S. Coast Guard, as reported on NBC San Diego's Web site: "They can't take showers, but they have plenty of drinking water and food."

Gina Calzada spoke with her sister Vicky Alvarez who's onboard. The Associated Press reports in The Orange County Register, "She said she has not been able to take her insulin for her diabetes because she is not eating enough. She told Calzada all that she had eaten was some bread, cucumbers and lettuce."

Angela Evans of Detroit reached boyfriend Greg Alexander by cell phone. Freep.com reports that she confirmed the ship is still without electricity and that the cabin she is sharing with a friend is pitch black, but that the toilets and cold running water have been fixed. She also mentioned that the food improved once the Navy helicopters made a supply drop.

Passenger Joey Noriega, who is honeymooning onboard the ship told ABC News on Wednesday, "We're eating spoiled turkey sandwiches and warm milk and warm yogurt. Everything smells like it's spoiled. ... Nothing's cooked. It's all sandwich meat. It's disgusting. You're afraid to eat it 'cause it's been left out and touched by everybody else on the ship."

ABC's "Good Morning America" spoke with passenger Valerie Ojeda who said, "I do see lights ahead, so I'm really happy ... I can't wait to get on land."

Passenger Lenora Chavez told CNN, "some of the plumbing was at capacity and vomit bags were hanging in corridors."

"It smells like a lot of people are throwing up," she said. "I can smell that a lot."

Chavez also noted that conditions improved as the ship neared land stating, "It has not been too bad," she said. "Everybody has been in good spirits. We have had entertainment and a lot of music. They are trying their best to keep us comfortable."

--by Shayne Rodriguez Thompson, Web Content Producer

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