Update: Engine Room Fire Disables Cruise Ship Near Venice

June 27, 2013
pullmantur-zenith (8:50 a.m. EDT) -- An engine-room fire has partially disabled Pullmantur Cruises' Zenith, requiring the cruise ship to be towed into port in Venice, Italy.

No injuries resulted from the electrical fire that broke out in the early morning hours of June 25, when the ship was sailing between Ravenna and Venice.

After crew extinguished the flames, the 47,255-ton Zenith lost power and was forced to anchor 17 miles from its intended destination. Four tugboats then towed the ship to the Marghera shipyard in Venice later the same day.

The line provided busses to greet the ship when it arrived in port and scrambled its own charter planes to fly the 1,672 passengers onboard home. According to a statement, passengers will receive a full refund of their cruise fare and onward transportation costs as well as a 25% future cruise discount.

The 21-year-old Zenith was originally built for Celebrity Cruises and was moved to Pullmantur, another Royal Caribbean subsidiary, in 2008; Zenith is scheduled to move to French cruise line Croisieres de France in 2014.

Reportedly, Pullmantur's Chairman and CEO, Gonzalo Chico Barbier, met the ship in Venice to apologize and manage operations. The line has said that the ship is being examined by technicians, and it is not yet known how long repairs will take. It has not been announced whether further cruises will be canceled.

--by Jamey Bergman, U.K. Production Editor