More than 4,200 passengers are trapped on a Carnival cruise ship 150 miles off the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico after a fire erupted in the engine room on Sunday, February 10. 

According to ABC News, the original plan was to get the ship, whose propulsion system is damaged, to Progreso, Mexico, but strong currents have carried it 90 miles north, so instead it will be towed to Mobile, Alabama – hopefully by Thursday, February 14. The boat was originally scheduled to return to Galveston, Texas, on Monday, February 11.

Passengers aboard the vessel say cell phone service is scarce, but they have communicated with loved ones off and on, reporting that conditions on the boat are less than ideal. Many people are sick and throwing up on the dock and there are feces on the floor, according to some passengers. Additionally, there is no running water and no power. 

“Conditions are getting worse by the hour,” Debra Rightmire, a passenger on the boat, told ABC News via text message. “Cabin carpets are wet with urine and water. Toilets are overflowing inside cabins. We are having to sleep in the hallways. [We ate a] onion and cucumber sandwich last night.”

Nevertheless, representatives from Carnival say they are doing everything they can to ensure comfort and safety aboard the ship, which is the size of two and a half football fields.

This is not the first time in recent years that a situation like this has happened on a Carnival cruise ship. In November 2010, reports Fox News, a vessel was stranded for three days after a similar fire-related incident occurred.

A relaxing day out on the water can turn dangerous quickly due to risks such as weather-related damages, collisions with other vessels and accidents due to human error. With this in mind, many individuals and organizations turn to experienced marine insurance agencies to ensure that they are covered in the event of an unfortunate incident.

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