Newest Carnival Ship Rescues Kayakers Stranded at Sea

Carnival Jubilee successfully rescued two men near Cancun, but where did they first come from and why did they need rescuing?

Carnival Jubilee was able to smoothly rescue two men in a kayak stranded at sea on the morning of Monday, January 29, 2024.

What was initially believed to be a man overboard emergency was quickly adapted to the rescue operation, and both men were brought safely aboard the cruise ship.

Carnival Jubilee Rescue at Sea

Carnival Jubilee was just enjoying a beautiful morning for a day at sea when a man overboard alert was called and the ship’s crew quickly sprang into action with emergency operations. A few minutes later, the situation was clarified as a rescue operation for a kayak with two men aboard rather than anyone actually overboard the cruise ship.

The men did have paddles to steer the kayak and were able to come alongside the cruise ship for immediate assistance. A rope was lowered and they safely climbed a ladder onto the ship while the kayak was left abandoned.

No supplies were immediately visible in the kayak, and only one of the men appeared to be wearing a life jacket while the other man was barefoot.

The men appeared to be from a larger vessel that may have sunk or otherwise have become disabled overnight, though those details have not been confirmed and it is possible that strong winds simply blew the kayak away from shore. The kayak’s bright yellow and orange coloring undoubtedly helped its visibility so the men could be spotted and rescued before they had drifted further.

The incident happened approximately 9 miles (15 kilometers) east of Cancun, Mexico, and 50 miles (80 km) north-northeast of Cozumel. There is no immediate confirmation of where the men had originally set sail from.

While onboard Carnival Jubilee, the men would have been provided food, water, and medical care as necessary. Local authorities were alerted, and the men were turned over to Mexican officials via a patrol boat sent to meet the cruise ship shortly after the rescue. This is standard procedure for rescued individuals, no matter what the circumstances.

Carnival Jubilee Rescue
Carnival Jubilee Rescue (Photo Credit: Lance Roche)

Carnival Jubilee departed from Galveston, Texas on a 7-night Western Caribbean cruise on Saturday, January 27. The first two days of the sailing are days at sea, and the ship will spend Tuesday, January 30 in Roatan, Honduras followed by Wednesday in Costa Maya and Thursday in Cozumel. Another day at sea will bring the ship home to the Lone Star State on Saturday, February 3.

The 183,521-gross-ton, Excel-class ship can welcome 5,374 guests aboard at double occupancy, or up to 6,631 passengers when fully booked. Also onboard are 1,735 international officers and crew members who offer excellent service, as well as looking out for anyone who may need help.

Second Rescue in 2024

Carnival Jubilee‘s rescue of the two men is not the first rescue operation of 2024. On January 18, Royal Caribbean International’s Harmony of the Seas rescued six stranded fishermen and their dog just north of the Yucatan Peninsula.

While it is commonly assumed that cruise ship rescues are typically of refugees fleeing their home country, this is not always the case. Refugee rescues do indeed happen, but cruise ships also offer assistance to anyone needing aid.

Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas Rescue
Royal Caribbean Harmony of the Seas Rescue

This might include fishermen, ferry boats, pleasure craft, cargo vessels, yachts, or other vessels that suffer from rough weather, engine failure, or other poor circumstances.

Read Also: Cruise Ship Lifeboats – How Are They Tested?

All mariners – regardless of the size of their ship – are bound by international maritime law to offer assistance to those at sea, regardless of who they may be, where they are, or why they require help. Cruise ship crews are well trained to offer such help in a smooth, efficient manner, safeguarding all life at sea.

Cruise Hive commends the crew of Carnival Jubilee and all cruise ships who offer such assistance to all in need.

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