The crew onboard Viking Sky sent distress signals after the ship started to suffer engine difficulties in high winds off the South West coast of Norway. The mayday alert was made as the ship endured waves of up to 10 metres and winds blowing at 38 knots.
It was reported by local media that lifeboats trying to get to the ship had to turn back to shore because of the dangerous conditions. Instead, others ships and five helicopters came to the rescue to safely evacuate the passengers and crew of Viking Sky – estimated to be around 1,300 people.
Viking Sky suffered engine failure on its journey from Tromsø to Stavanger and the stormy conditions meant that it was difficult to control the vessel.
The area, known as the Hustadvika Bay, is reportedly one of the most dangerous stretches of Norway’s coast. Eye-witnesses told how they saw the cruise ship listing and although partial engine power was regained, the decision was made to evacuate. Viking Sky has been able to anchor approximately 2km from the coast. Evacuated passengers were taken to safety in nearby Molde.
Viking Sky is still a relatively new cruise ship that was launched in 2017. The cruise ship was christened in Tromsø, the last port of call for the cruise ship before it got into difficulties. The ship is elegant and stylishly designed and features a beautiful spa with snow grotto and aft infinity pool. You can take a virtual tour of Viking Star, which is the sister ship to Viking Sky.
Viking Cruises’ ocean cruises have become very popular in a short space of time as people have enjoyed the high standard of cruising the company offers. It’s award-winning ships have been recognised for their value for money, spa and food onboard by Cruise Critic and The British Travel Awards. Viking Cruises is a cruise line I would definitely like to cruise with in the future.
The safety of passengers and crew is always the main priority for cruise lines and regular drills are carried out by the crew to be prepared in the event of an emergency. Although mandatory muster drills that take place at beginning of each new cruise are sometimes seen as a chore by passengers, it’s reassuring to know that your safety is being taken care of.
In this instance Viking Cruises put the safety of their passengers and crew first by deciding to evacuate the ship.