The late departure of the ship follows the air-lifting of ten affected passengers (among them three children) to hospital care in Brisbane and Noumea, according to P&O spokesman David Jones'.
“We took the decision that we were not going to have Pacific Dawn leave Port Vila until we were completely satisfied that airlift arrangements were advanced and on their way to completion.
“By around lunchtime, we became satisfied the airlift was significantly advanced.”
Pacific Dawn is on her way to Isle of Pines, the next scheduled port of call in her itinerary. The one-day delay due to the incident means that the ship did not make the scheduled visit to Mystery Island.
Jones said the remaining cruisers onboard the ship had been “fantastic” in light of the situation.
“They have been as concerned about those affected as we have.
“We would like to express our condolences to the families of the two Ni-Vanuatu local people who passed away, who were on the other local bus involved in the collision.”
Jones confirmed that the air-lifted passengers had been stabilised before being airlifted and “well cared for” by Port Vila health services. He explained:
“But we were very conscious that this is a big event for Vanuatu and Port Vila in terms of pressure on health services so we took the decision to airlift."
For reports on other Pacific Dawn ship accidents see at CruiseMinus.com