Allure of the Seas off to rough start

November 2, 2010

The world’s largest cruise ship, Royal Caribbean’s Allure of the Seas, almost had a disastrous cruise ship accident on its first voyage. The Allure of the Seas, the sister ship to the current world’s largest cruise ship, Oasis of the Seas, was recently launched and is on its way to Fort Lauderdale’s Port Everglades for its maiden cruise.

As the Allure of the Seas was passing under the Storebalt Bridge in Denmark, it almost hit the underside of the bridge. The cruise ship needs approximately 267 feet of clearance in order to pass under the bridge. The top of the cruise ship was within 12 inches of hitting the underside of the bridge.

To avoid a disastrous cruise ship accident, the ship’s captain and crew took steps to lower the ship in the water to avoid hitting the bridge. By adding water ballast to the ship and increasing the speed of the ship, the ship sits lower in the water, allowing it to pass. The ship is also equipped with retractable smokestacks that lower when needed, which the crew utilized to avoid an accident.

The Allure of the Seas is almost 1,200 feet long and holds over 5,000 passengers, in addition to crew. With a cruising speed of 22 knots, an accident involving such a large cruise ship and the Storebalt Bridge, a major traffic route between Zealand, Denmark and the Island of Sprogo, could have resulted in severe property damage and injuries.

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