‘Anthem of the Seas’ passenger: ‘We were in a dangerous situation’
The passengers aboard the Royal Caribbean cruise ship, Anthem of the Seas, had the ride of their lives last weekend, just not the one they were hoping for. The ship left Saturday afternoon for a seven-day trip that would take a quick turn on Sunday into the oncoming winter storm. This led to less than desirable conditions for those on board.
Virgil Hollender, one of the 6,000 people who were on the ship, called in to Steve Trevelise's show to give a first hand perspective of what it was like on the ship.
Hollender says he knew something was wrong on Sunday afternoon when it was announced that everyone needed to go to their cabins. This is when the winds picked up to about 70 miles per hour and the water got rough. Though reports say the waves got up to 30 feet high, Hollender claims that the waves were coming up to his room on the 6th deck, he guessed around 50 feet. As a former Navy man, Hollender says all they could do was "hope to stay safe."
While some passengers called the captain's decision to turn into the storm "negligent," Hollender said he believes "the captain did the right thing by turning them into the wind to let them ride (the storm) out." Hollender told Steve that the captain and the other crew members "weren't sugar coating anything" and were up front with those on board about the dangerous situation they were in.
One exception, says Hollender, is that they were not told that one of the propulsion systems had failed.
Despite the trip's difficulties, Hollender and his wife aren't deterred from Royal Caribbean or from cruising in general. He places little blame on the company, stating "I don't think anyone expected us to get hit that much."