Carnival Cruise Line (CCL) has signed a charter agreement with the city of New Orleans and the US Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to provide ‘Carnival Glory’ for first responders, following Hurricane ‘Ida’.
The cruise ship will be used up to 18th September under the terms of the charter.
As a result, Carnival has cancelled the vessel’s cruise, which was due to depart on 12th September and plans to restart ‘Carnival Glory’s’ cruise operations from New Orleans on 19th September.
‘Carnival Glory’ has arrived at New Orleans and has undergone a required US Coast Guard (USCG) inspection.
She began provisioning food, water and materials to prepare for up to 2,600 hospital workers, first responders, city and utility workers and other emergency personnel to join the ship.
She will stay in port and serve as emergency housing for frontline workers directly involved in the city’s infrastructure recovery and healthcare needs.
“While we want to provide the city of New Orleans with an economic boost by restarting guest operations, we want to first provide this critical housing support to address emergency needs and to get power restored to the region,” said Christine Duffy, CCL President (pictured).
“We appreciate the understanding of our guests, who we know love New Orleans as much as we do.”
Brandy Christian, President and CEO Port NOLA and CEO of the New Orleans Public Belt Railroad, added.
“Port NOLA appreciates Carnival’s deployment of ‘Carnival Glory’ to New Orleans. Her berths will accommodate the hardworking first responders and essential personnel working on storm recovery efforts in our region.
“Port NOLA, our Federal, state, and local partner agencies all support those who are quickly restoring critical infrastructure in the city and helping to get cargo moving again,” he said.
In addition, Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line has chartered out the ‘Grand Classica’ to Louisiana-based energy company Entergy Corp also to house front line workers in New Orleans.
Hurricane relief efforts and on-the-ground support are not new to Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line, as the ‘Grand Celebration’ was deployed to St Thomas in 2017, following Hurricane ‘Irma’, in a charter by FEMA, housing the US National Guard and first responders.
In 2019, following Hurricane ‘Dorian’, the line conducted numerous humanitarian sailings to Grand Bahama Island, transporting first responders and critical resources including food and medical supplies.
“As a family-owned and operated company, we are able to be nimble and pivot when needed, in order to help communities in crisis,” explained Bahamas Paradise Cruise Line President, Kevin Sheehan Jr.
“Hurricane relief and humanitarian charters are something we’ve done several times in the past, and we are proud to be able to move quickly to action now in this way, helping facilitate relief for the thousands of people who remain without power across the region.
“I am sure our customers will continue to be as supportive of our actions as they have always been in the past, when these situations have required us to step up and step in,” he concluded.