letters | The Carnival Triumph’s Ordeal

More safety safeguards needed in big cruise ships

RE “TOO big to bail” (Op-ed, Feb. 18):

There are serious shortcomings in the design of giant cruise ships that should be addressed. These ships seem to have insufficient backup power to meet the needs of the boat, including the sewage processing plant. So when a disaster occurs such as a fire in the engine room, you now have a floating scow with 4,000 people left to fend for themselves.

A readily available solution, which I’m surprised has not been incorporated into all cruise boats, is to have a separate, back-up power plant. This back-up would supply all auxiliary power for lights, sanitation heating, ventiliation, and air conditioning, and also have enough power to keep the ship underway to a safe port.


After all, one sea tug was used to pull the Triumph at a very slow rate of speed into Mobile, Ala. Surely an engine the size of a tug engine (or larger if need be) could be on board to power the propellers, and a secondary generator to supply the rest of the power needs. These would be in a separate, secure compartment.

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Common sense seems not to be in force in designing these babies, and it’s hard to understand why not.

George Suokko