oasisbridge.jpgBefore it could leave the Baltic Sea and head towards the open ocean, the world’s largest cruise ship had to clear one final obstacle last night.
The Great Belt bridge, which links two Danish islands, stood between Oasis of the Seas as it sailed from the shipyard in Finland to its new homeport in Florida.
Even with its smokestacks retracted telescopically into the funnels, there was a mere two feet clearance between the highest point of the ship and the bridge deck, and the ship was powered through at a scary 20 knots to make sure it was sitting deeper in the water.
Briudge traffic was halted and hundreds of people gathered on the shore to watch the event. Project manager Toivo Ilvonen, project manager for the builders STX Europe reported that “nothing fell off” which must be a relief to owners Royal Caribbean.
The £1 billion vessel is 40 per cent larger than the next biggest cruise ship. If it had not been for the Great Belt Bridge, who knows how much bigger it could have been.
Oasis of the Seas is expected to be in Southampton Water tomorrow to off-load 300 workmen before setting out across the Atlantic to Fort Lauderdale.