Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Hot Topic: The Carnival Splendor

I have had it with the media coverage of the Carnival Splendor. In case you don’t know, last week the Carnival Splendor cruise ship had a fire in the Engine room. The ship was disabled – no electricity and no working toilets for several hours – and had to be towed back to San Diego. From all the passenger accounts, this very serious situation was handled professionally. The cruise line is going beyond the call of duty to make the passengers whole – reimbursing for the cruise, offering another free cruise, waiving all charges and getting people home the fastest way possible. More importantly, every single person arrived safely back in San Diego. The media is trying to spin this as the “Cruise from Hell”. I cringed listening to reporters try to goad passengers into saying bad things about the cruise line or their experience. To their credit, many of the passengers spoke about what an outstanding job the crew, the Captain, and the cruise line did. Sure, they complained about the food, but that was about it.
The news could have been filled with heartwarming stories about how everyone pulled together. The message board are filled with such andetotes – human chains carrying food between decks, passengers carrying disabled passengers from deck to deck and opening up their cabins to those without windows or working toilets. Instead, we see one reporter after another trying to manipulate the truth to build the “cruise from hell” story.

Not too long ago, we had another story of a captain who relied on his training, made good decisions and safely ferried passengers through a serious situation. They called it the “Miracle on the Hudson”, not the “Flight from Hell.” I believe that the crew of this ship deserves the accolades and it’s a shame that CNN and other news outlets missed that important part of the story.

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