The Viking Sky trouble proves cruising is not all fun and games – Rick Jackson

I’m sure many of us watched in horror what passengers had to endure on the cruise ship Viking Sky which lost all power off the Norwegian coast in gale force winds over the weekend.

Wednesday, 27th March 2019, 3:10 pm
Updated Wednesday, 27th March 2019, 3:16 pm
The cruise ship Viking Sky arrives at port off Molde, Norway after the problems in heavy seas off Norway's western coast. Rescue helicopters took more than 475 passengers from a cruise ship that got stranded off Norway's western coast in bad weather before the vessel departed for a nearby port under escort and with nearly 900 people still on board, the ship's owner said Sunday. Picture: Svein Ove Ekornesvag/NTB scanpix via AP.

With 1,300 passengers on board, the ship rolled and heaved in rough seas off the rocky Scandinavian coastline. Why a ship nearly two years old lost all propulsive power is yet to be known.

The gale force eight conditions were well within the ship’s capabilities, but issues arose after the engines failed.

The ship was unable to sail into the weather and being beam on with no stabilisers operational, she was free to roll alarmingly.

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The one thing those passengers will now have is the winning card in ‘cruise ship top trumps’ which is a bizarre game all cruise ship regulars play.

Any ship will move about in rough seas, no matter how big, and cruise ships are without exception.

For some, this can ruin a holiday or put them off cruising. For many, this is where they earn their stripes.

You always overhear other passengers regale stories of their roughest cruise. How they were confined to quarters, how furniture moved about and how the pools were closed.

I remember our cruise on the Oriana one September. I woke on the first night with the ship moving about.

Unable to sleep, I wondered around the ship and watched the stern pool empty itself as it sloshed from side to side.

The Bay of Biscay can be unfriendly at times and the next day many stayed seated.

The captain informed us the seas were up to six metres in height and we’d sailed through them at 23 knots.

With that in mind, the ship handled it superbly.

Other cruisers have their favourite ship on which they will always sail; that is unless her itinerary doesn’t suit their needs.

They will then sail on another ship, spending the entire two weeks moaning how the ship isn’t as good, even if it’s a sister ship.

Cruisers are a hardy, funny bunch who are out on deck no matter what the weather!


I’m not happy about the EU’s new plan for speed limiters

By 2022, the European Union wants all cars to be fitted with speed limiters connected to systems so we cannot drive above the speed limit on certain roads.

Doesn’t this affect our civil liberties? Is this not another step to living in the world of George Orwell’s 1984, or am I overreacting?

There are many situations where it might be necessary to drive above the speed limit. I believe that this speed limit system could actually be more dangerous in general driving conditions.

Maybe a better option is to fit these limiters to drivers who are known to break the speed limit for a certain amount of time, rather than go on a speed awareness course.


I bet there are not many kids called Theresa nowadays…

egret the name you’ve given to your child? One in seven of us believe we have made a terrible mistake in naming our children, according to a study.

fake positive reaction when someone tells you the name they have given to their baby, when really you think it’s blimmin’ awful?

Another insult is when you tell someone your pet also shares the name with your child. I always think this when I meet a little Harvey or Ruby.

I wonder how many 20-year-old Kylies and Britneys wish their parents had not chosen names from famous celebrities at the time?

Suppose that’s better than Donald, Boris and Theresa, though...