A Hurtigruten cruise ship has been damaged by a rogue wave while sailing in the North Sea, leaving her temporarily disabled.
The MS Maud was completing a 14-night roundtrip cruise from Tilbury in London when she was hit by the rogue wave on 21st December at around 4pm.
The wave took out several windows on the bridge of the ship as well as causing a temporary loss of power, essentially rendering the ship adrift for a short period of time.
User “Sea & son” (@OnDeepWater) has been sharing clips on X/Twitter:
MS Maud pic.twitter.com/mfofaAePDs— Sea & son (@OnDeepWater) December 23, 2023
While power has been restored to the ship, she has lost the ability to be navigated independently, and is currently being steered manually from within the engine room, rather than being controlled from the bridge.
Thankfully, no serious injuries have been reported, and the ship is stable and able to return to the port.
Following the incident, the ship was sailing at speeds of around 2-3 knots, which is equivalent to 2-4 MPH or 4-6 KPH. Wind speeds are high, at around 40 MPH / 65 KPH.
At full capacity, MS Maud can accommodate 532 passengers, although she is only half full at present. The next cruise that was due to depart on Saturday, 23rd December, has been cancelled while repairs are being assessed.
The ship is now being towed towards Germany at an improved speed of between 8 and 9 knots. Passengers will be flown home.
Rogue waves are those that appear suddenly and are larger than typical for that part of the ocean. It’s believed that strong currents and winds are the main cause, though studies into rogue wave causes are still ongoing.
Thankfully, these incidents are exceptionally rare.
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Jenni Fielding is the founder of Cruise Mummy. She has worked in the cruise industry since 2015 and has taken over 30 cruises. Now, she helps over 1 million people per month to plan their perfect cruise holidays.