Cruise Ship Stranded Off Norway Reaches Shore After Harrowing Rescue Effort – The New York Times

The cause of the ship’s engine failure was unknown, Torstein Hagen, the Norwegian founder and chairman of Viking Cruises, which has its headquarters in Switzerland, told local news outlets on Sunday.

He said that the passengers would be compensated. “They will get their money back,” he said, adding, “They will also have a letter from me, and be invited back again.”

Mr. Hagen told the newspaper VG Sunday: “What happened today is among the worst I have ever experienced. But as it seems that all will end well, I’ve got to say we have been lucky. We keep doing the best we can.”

In a statement on Sunday, Viking Cruises said, “The 479 passengers who were airlifted from the vessel are currently on shore and arrangements have been made to fly them home, with the first passengers leaving today.”

It also said that the company’s next sailing, which had been scheduled to embark on March 27, had been canceled. “Guests and their travel agents have been contacted directly. We do not anticipate any additional cancellations at this time,” the statement said.

The Viking Sky will remain at the port in Molde for a public investigation into what happened, Mr. Knudsen, the spokesman for the rescue operation, said.

The cruise ship industry has suffered a number of disasters in the past decade, including the sinking of the Costa Concordia in 2012 and the deadly fire of the Norman Atlantic in 2014, as well as setbacks such as outbreaks of illness and onboard drug raids.

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