Funnel Fire on Carnival Cruise Line Vessel Off Bahamas

a large cruise ship as seen from the water
Updated Published

On March 23rd, during a voyage through the Bahamas, a fire broke out at the funnel of Carnival Freedom, a ship belonging to Carnival Cruise Line. The incident occurred on a four-night journey from Port Canaveral on the east coast of Florida to the Bahamas. Due to adverse weather, a planned stop at Princess Cays in Eleuthera, Bahamas, was called off.

The fire was spotted around 15:15 local time on the port side wing of the ship's funnel, often nicknamed the “whale tail” for its distinct shape. Although there was speculation among passengers that a lightning strike during a storm might have sparked the blaze, Carnival Cruise Line has initiated an investigation to determine the cause.

Fortunately, no injuries were reported among the ship's more than 3,700 passengers and 1,150 crew members. The ship's captain promptly deployed the onboard fire response teams and recommended passengers stay away from the open decks. To support the firefighting efforts, the ship moved about twenty miles off Eleuthera island into nearby rainstorms.

The fire was extinguished within two hours, although a piece of the funnel's wing fell onto the open deck. Despite this, Carnival Freedom continued its voyage to Grand Bahama Island, aiming to dock in Freeport on Sunday morning.

This event is the second funnel fire incident on Carnival Freedom in two years, with the previous occurrence in May 2022 while the ship was docked at Grand Turk in the Turks and Caicos Islands. Following repairs, the ship resumed operations as normal.