It was a not a good Thursday for cruise ships. On the same day Carnival Cruise Line grabbed headlines with one of its ships’ funnels engulfed in flames, Royal Caribbean crashed into a dock in Jamaica with one of the world’s largest ships.
The incident happened in the port of Falmouth with witness video showing Harmony of the Seas, which sails out of Port Canaveral, attempting to move into position at the Jamaican port when the stern of the ship struck the metal and concrete structure known as the “dolphin” that extends out from the main dock.
The moment Royal Caribbean’s Harmony of the Seas crashed into the dock in Falmouth, Jamaica Thursday.
Damage to the ship was minor pic.twitter.com/CCrbEj8cUa
— Handy Joe (@DidThatHurt2) May 27, 2022
Video posted by several accounts on Twitter including @DidThatHurt2 shows the slow and crunching sound as the Harmony of the Seas strikes the structure, and the scaffolding extenders give way to the massive 226,963 gross tons.
Passengers on board can be heard yelling as the incident unfolds with one woman yelling, “Oh … my … God.” while people on the shore begin running away from the approaching vessel.
Royal Caribbean in a press statement said the ship “made contact with an extension part of the dock.” The dolphin is used by ships as a mooring point, particularly by the 1,188-foot-long Oasis class vessels like Harmony of the Seas. Despite the damage, the ship was still able to dock alongside the historic port, and let passengers off like normal.
The were no injuries, and damage to the ship’s exterior was deemed “cosmetic,” the line stated.
The incident did not stop Harmony of the Seas from continuing on its sailing as scheduled. It departed Port Canaveral last Sunday on its regular seven-night Western Caribbean itinerary, and will return to Florida on Sunday morning.
The damage is far less than what Carnival faced Thursday when Carnival Freedom, which also sails out of Port Canaveral, suffered a major fire on its funnel system while docked in Grand Turk.
While no one was injured in that incident and emergency crews were able to douse the flames, the cruise line was forced to make plans to divert the Carnival Conquest from Miami, canceling one of its cruses, to come to the more than 2,500 passengers’ rescue.
Originally due back to Port Canaveral on Saturday, the passengers will await the surrogate Carnival ship’s arrival and not return until Monday. Carnival officials said the rest of the ship is operational, but after the passengers are taken care of, it will take the ship to Freeport, Bahamas to repair the funnel.
The incident forced the line to cancel three of Freedom’s planned sailings, but could face more cancellations depending on the repairs.