Norwegian Escape Runs Aground, Leaving Ship Stranded

NCL escape grounded, tugs

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(Updated 8:07 p.m. ET) A newly updated article with the latest cancellation on Norwegian Escape can be found here.  

Guests on the Norwegian Escape found themselves experiencing an unexpected overnight stop after the ship ran aground off the coast of the Dominican Republic on Monday afternoon.

Norwegian Escape‘s Unexpected Adventure

The ship ran afoul of a combination of shallow waters and high winds. As a result, the captain reported to guests, the bow wound up becoming entrenched in the ocean’s sandy bottom.

In a statement, Norwegian said, “During the afternoon of March 14, 2022, Norwegian Escape made contact with the channel bed as it was departing Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic. All guests and crew are safe, and there are no reports of damages to the ship. Operations on board have not been impacted, and all services and activities continue as scheduled. We are currently working on a solution to free the ship and ready her for a safe departure.”

Because we live in the age of social media, the entire event was chronicled on Twitter by @DisneyTalk101, aka The Disney Dude, who provided the pictures below.

NCL Escape aground tugs

And while some seemed to think the situation was dire, he assured us — and those following his feed — that nothing could be further from the truth. “Everything is very calm,” he said. “Life is normal other than the boat isn’t moving. All activities [are still] going on.” Of course, that did not include shopping or gambling because of the vessel’s proximity to land.

NCL escape grounded, tugs

In fact, he went on to send a special shout-out to the cruise line and their staff. “During this ‘beaching’ all crew members have been extremely calming and helpful,” he said in response to those suggesting otherwise. “No sense of panic. Other than not moving, you wouldn’t know there’s a problem.”

At the time of this writing, the ship is still stranded, with the assumption being that morning’s high tides will allow Escape to float free once again.

Norwegian escape tugs
All photos courtesy of The Disney Dude/@DisneyTalk101

At the time of the incident, Norwegian Escape was on a seven-night Caribbean sailing. The ship left Port Canaveral on Saturday, March 12. Following Monday’s stop in Puerto Plata, she was expected to sail to St. Thomas, Tortola and Great Stirrup Cay — better known as Norwegian Cruise Line’s private island — before returning to Florida on March 19.

There’s no word yet as to how the itinerary will be adjusted to account for the unexpected delay.

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