The help from cruise lines remains needed in St Vincent. Although the Volcanic eruptions in the la Soufriere volcano seem to be lessening, the volcano continues to erupt explosively periodically. It has also begun to generate pyroclastic flows.
So far, eighty-eight shelters with 4,161 occupants are now activated. Some three thousand seven hundred and eighteen persons are being housed in private shelters, while a total of 1,459 families have been displaced so far.
Evacuations continue for those who have chosen to leave the island for other nearby Islands nearby like Barbados, St. Maarten, and St Lucia, which is done with the help of both Serenade of the Seas and Celebrity Reflection.
The help from the cruise lines in the area, Carnival and Royal Caribbean have offered their help, remaining necessary as drinking water becomes scarce and the volcano continues to erupt explosively periodically.
Royal Caribbean Evacuates and Provides Drinking Water
The humanitarian efforts from the cruise ships continue. Simultaneously, the UN has warned of a humanitarian crisis as more and more people become displaced by the volcanic eruptions, and highly toxic ash falls from the volcano.
Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas and Celebrity Reflection are active in the evacuations of people from the island. So far, In addition to the 137 evacuees who debarked in St. Lucia last Saturday, Royal Caribbean Group’s Celebrity Cruises will evacuate 159 nationals from the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada to St. Maarten today. They will arrive in St. Maarten today.
Evacuees have to present a negative PCR or antigen test to board the Celebrity Reflection vessel today; vaccinations are not a requirement.
Water continues to be of great concern, according to Garth Saunders, the minister of the island’s water and sewer authority. Although the situation was improving and more water supply systems were coming back on, much-needed water deliveries were made by Serenade of the Seas yesterday. More relief supplies are on the way.
Carnival’s Help Not Immediately Needed
In the meantime, Carnival Cruise Line’s Carnival Legend and Carnival Paradise are docked in Philippsburg, St Maarten, awaiting further instructions. Carnival Cruise Line had dispatched the two vessels to St. Vincent to help out with possible evacuations. However, the government of St Vincent advised this help was not necessary for now.
A Carnival released the following statement:
“Government officials in St. Vincent have advised Carnival there is no immediate need for an [off-island] evacuation of local residents. In consultation with the government, Carnival will be moving Legend and Paradise from the area, but we stand ready to assist should the circumstances change,”
According to a report from the BBC, the humanitarian crisis could take months, if not longer, while nearby islands could also be affected by the ash falls. The volcano eruption could not have come at a worse time for the islands.
With a resumption of cruises and tourism in the area imminent, St. Vincent seems set to lose even more income while already having suffered through the past 12 months without tourist income.
The Caribbean disaster emergency management agency (CDEMA) has set up a website where those willing to donate money for the relief efforts can do so: https://www.cdema.org/la-soufriere
Cruise Hive will keep you updated on the latest from the relief provided by the cruise industry and the general situation in St Vincent.