Even the biggest cruise ship in the world is not immune to the weather, and Royal Caribbean have announced today that Oasis of the Seas is going to be arriving in its Florida home port two days behind schedule, thanks to storms in the Atlantic.
The 220,000-ton vessel is on its way from Finland and chairman and CEO Richard Fain reported earlier this week that his new pride and joy had encountered winds of up to 70 mph (anything above 74mph is hurricane-force) and 40-foot waves.
He struck a confident note, however, saying the ship was riding the seas well, and that crew training and entertainment rehearsals were continuing as planned.
Somewhere along the way, though, Captain William Wright took the decision to slow down – the ship was making only six knots into the teeth of the gale – and to steer a more southerly course away from worst of the weather. The Oasis will now be arriving in Fort Lauderdale on November 13th – that’s next Friday by the way, I hope it’s not an omen.
Website CruiseCritic.co.uk also reported that the weather had caused minor damage to two of Oasis’s lifeboats, which are of a new design.
Royal Caribbean says the delay will not have any impact on the plans for inaugural celebrations. The first two days in port are due to be spent loading thousands of plants on board for the ship’s Central Park, and Rihanna is due to perform her brand-new single, Russian Roulette, in the open-air Aqua Theatre on November 16.
Oasis is not the only new ship heading west across the Atlantic this week. Carnival Dream is on its way to New York for a naming ceremony which I will be reporting from on Thursday. No delays are reported for the Dream’s crossing.