FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, February 15, 2013
CONTACT: JONELLE TRIMMER
Congresswoman Matsui Calls on House Committee to Hold Investigative and Oversight Hearings on Carnival Cruise Ship
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Doris Matsui (CA-06) sent a letter to the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure urging them to hold investigative and oversight hearings on the recent incident that occurred on the Carnival cruise ship, the Triumph.
“The recent catastrophe with Triumph, a Carnival cruise ship, is just one more mishap for an industry that touts itself as providing safe, family-friendly vacations. While I am glad that no injuries have yet been reported, the stranding of over 4200 people for four days is anything but safe. The power outages, limited access to food and severe sewage issues are disturbing and raise concerns that these enormous ships are not properly prepared. A thorough investigation must be undertaken immediately, and oversight procedures must be implemented, to ensure that a similar accident does not happen in the future,” said Congresswoman Matsui.
In 2010, Congresswoman Matsui sponsored H.R. 3360, the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act, which passed Congress with strong bipartisan support and was signed into law by the President. This legislation improves the safety and reporting standards by which cruise ships must adhere.
A PDF copy of the signed letter is available here.
The full text of the letter is below:
February 15, 2013
Dear Chairmen and Ranking Members,
I write to strongly urge you to hold investigative and oversight hearings on the recent catastrophe that occurred on the Carnival cruise ship, the Triumph.
As you know, on February 10, 2013, a small engine fire onboard the Triumph caused power outages that left over 4200 passengers and crew members stranded in the Caribbean for over four days. There were widespread reports of limited access to food, no air conditioning, and severe sewage issues that left passengers in inhabitable conditions.
The cruise line appears to have been completely unprepared to deal with such a major disaster. One small engine fire caused an enormous ship to become dead in the water. We need answers about why this occurred, why there were not adequate back plans, and why it took over four days to get these people safely back to land. Someone must be held accountable.
The cruise industry forcefully defends itself as being a provider of safe, luxurious vacations. Yet the experience onboard the Triumph was anything but. We owe it to the people who lived through this nightmare a swift and thorough investigation into what went wrong and why. The safety of future passengers and crewmembers depends on it.
Thank you for your timely attention to this manner, and I look forward to working with you to ensure all passengers have the safest voyage possible.
DORIS O. MATSUI
Member of Congress