Storm-battered cruise ship returns to Bayonne port

BAYONNE – Royal Caribbean Cruise Line’s Anthem of the Seas returned to its home port of Bayonne on Wednesday night, Feb. 10, after what passengers described as a harrowing experience at sea.
The ship left Bayonne on Saturday, Feb. 6, on its way to Florida, and encountered 100-plus-mile-per-hour winds and 30-foot waves off the coast of North Carolina before heading back.
While hundreds left the ship after arriving in Bayonne on Wednesday night, thousands more stayed aboard to disembark on Thursday, Feb. 11. One of them likened his experience to a natural disaster.
“It was like an earthquake, but in the water,” said Nick Luca of Santiago, Chile, who took the cruise with his mother. “You could see the waves come to the window.”
Kseniia, a young woman from Ukraine, said the bad weather caught her and other passengers by surprise.
“It was scary,” she said. “We were playing games, and then the storm began. It was all of a sudden. Everyone was afraid.”
Meteorologists and former captains of other cruise ships have questioned why Anthem of the Seas left port with forecasts of intense bad weather. A Florida legislator has called for an investigation.
The incident left Luca undeterred.
“I would cruise again,” he said. –Joseph Passantino

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