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Adventure Expedition Cruise Ship, M/V Plancius, Stranded In South Atlantic

Posted: 04/12/2012 6:28 pm Updated: 04/12/2012 6:29 pm

Mv Plancius

It's just not the year for a pleasure cruise.

An adventure ship operated by Oceanwide Expeditions is stranded in the South Atlantic. The ship lost power on April 9 after setting out from Ushuaia, Argentina on March 29.

No passengers or crew were injured by the mechanical failure that sapped most of the ship's propulsion power.

The M/V Plancius, which was originally built for the Dutch Navy in 1976, is now docked at King Edward Point Research Station in Grytviken, South Georgia, the largest town on the remote group of islands more than 600 miles from the Falkland Islands and the final resting place of intrepid explorer Ernest Shackleton.

The 31-day expedition's ultimate destination was Ascension, the British territory, but many stops at some of the world's remote islands were planned along the way.

All 73 passengers and at least 42 crew members are safe on board according to a press release from Oceanwide. They are waiting for a rescue ship to arrive from Mar del Plata, Argentina on Friday. In the meantime, passengers are participating in "local walks and [an] excursion program organized by expedition staff."

The rescue ship will shuttle the stranded passengers and crew back to Montevideo, Uruguay by April 24, Oceanwide reports.

The power failure comes during one of the worst years for the cruise industry in recent memory. In January, the Costa Concordia ran aground off the coast of Italy, killing at least 30 passengers and calling into question the safety practices of the entire industry. In March, the Silver Shadow collided with a cargo ship in Vietnam and an Azamara vessel caught fire.

On Tuesday, a ship retracing the route of the Titanic, which sank 100 years ago this month, had to interrupt its trip after a medical emergency.

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Filed by Paul Brady  |