Norwegian Pearl accidents and incidents

Norwegian Pearl cruise ship


Length (LOA)
294 m / 965 ft

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CruiseMapper's Norwegian Pearl cruise ship accidents, incidents and law news reports relate to a 2873-passenger vessel owned by Norwegian Cruise Line. Our Norwegian Pearl accidents page contains reports made by using official data from renown online news media sources, US Coast Guard and Wikipedia.

Here are also reported latest updates on cruise law news related to ashore and shipboard crimes still investigated by the police. Among those could be arrests, filed lawsuits against the shipowner / cruise line company, charges and fines, grievances, settled / withdrawn legal actions, lost cases, Norovirus, etc.

  • fire – 2015
  • propulsion/power loss – 2008, 2011
  • pollution in Alaska – 2008 (thrice), 2009 (twice), 2010 (twice), 2018 (Juneau)
  • Norovirus (passengers/crew)- 2 outbreaks in 2007 (total 427 / 31), 2015 (145 / 13)
  • deaths – 2007 (drowned in Barbados), overboard (2008, 2015, 2016-crew), 2014 (crew killed in Roatan)
  • injuries/crimes – 2008 (robbery in St Lucia)
  04 September 2018Sea Pollution

On September 4, 2018, Juneau residents called Alaska state's DEC (Department of Environmental Conservation) complaining about emissions from the liner's exhaust stack during maneuvering for berthing at ~1:30 pm.

The incident was reported by the local news media  Juneau Empire, which also provided a time-lapse video of the incident. As the media stated, "air quality violations are based on percentage of opacity" (100% opacity means you can’t see through it). During docking, cruise ships in Alaska are allowed to exceed 20% opacity for only 3 min per hour. When leaving port, anchoring or docking, cruise ship exhausts are allowed to exceed 40% opacity for only 9 min per hour.

The incident occurred on 7-day Alaskan cruise (itinerary Sept 2-9) roundtrip from homeport Seattle WA to Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay, Ketchikan, and Victoria (BC Canada).

Note: Compared to 2017, cruise ship fines for violating Alaska's air quality regulations were raised in 2018 - from USD 37,500 to 46,200.

  08 September 2016Crew / Passenger Deaths

(overboard) On September 8, 2016, a 25-year-old female crew was reported fell overboard and missing. The CCTV footage revealed the woman (of Colombian origin, with 2 NCL employment contracts) went overboard in Lynn Canal (southeast mainland Alaska).

The ship's location was between Funter Bay (Admiralty Island) and Point Retreat (Granite Harbour, Victoria Land). It happened at ~1:30 am, while the ship was en-route from Skagway to Glacier Bay. For the search and rescue operation, USCG Sitka launched a helicopter, while USCG Juneau launched the Cutter Liberty. Unfortunately, the body was not found and both searches were suspended on Sept 9.

The accident occurred during 7-day Alaskan cruise (itinerary Sept 4-11) from Seattle WA to Juneau, Skagway, Glacier Bay, Ketchikan, Victoria BC (Canada).

  12 November 2015Crew / Passenger Deaths

(overboard) On November 12, 2015, a 24-year-old female passenger (Kaylyn Sommer, from Charleston SC, USA) fell overboard and was reported missing. The incident occurred while the ship was approx 25 ml / 40 km off Cuba’s coast (in the Yucatan Channel, aka Straits of Yucatan).

The ship was on a chartered by EDM music-themed cruise out of homeport Miami FL (itinerary Nov 8-19). The 11-day voyage was themed “Mad Decent Boat Party” with only one call port (Cozumel Mexico). The passenger overboard was reported at ~7 pm, after the cruise ship conducted search and rescue operation with 3 of its rescue boats. The USCG deployed an airplane C-130 and 3 patrol boats to assist the search, but the woman’s body was not found.

  07 May 2015Other Incidents

May 7, 2015, the episode “Cruisin’ for a Bruisin'” (part of the “Impractical Jokers” – hidden camera reality series) was filmed on the NCL Pearl ship. The episode was aired on the truTV channel (Time Warner) on May 7, 2015.

  April 2015Cruise Illness / Norovirus Outbreaks

March-April 2015, CDC reported on voyage Mar 26 to Apr 6, a Norovirus outbreak affected a total of 145 passengers (out of 2472, or 5,9%) and 13 crew (out of 1062, or 1,2%). The ship was on 11-day Eastern-Southern Caribbean cruise from Miami.

  06 April 2014Crew / Passenger Deaths

(murder) On April 6, 2014, a male crew was shot and bled to death ashore in call port Coxen Hole (Roatan Island, Honduras). The man (Jacob Bagan, of Filipino origin) worked on the ship as assistant cook. He was gunned down for his cell phone. The murderer left his bicycle at the crime scene.

Roatan’s mayor offered ~USD 5,000 reward for capturing the killer. On April 9, the police, assisted by a special force unit, arrested the murder (Guzman Ramirez) and found the revolver involved. After this incident, NCL announced it is cancelling for a week all scheduled stops in Coxen Hole.

In June 2014, the US State Department issued a travel warning stating that the Honduras’ murder rate is currently the world's highest.

  24 July 2011Propulsion / Power Loss

On July 24, 2011, the celebrity comedian Bill Cosby performed live on the ship. Both evening shows were held in the onboard theater on July 24, while the ship was in homeport Seattle WA overnight for propeller repairs. Due to the delayed departure, the next Alaskan itinerary dropped call port Juneau AK.

Passengers received as compensation US$150 per cabin in onboard credit, plus 10% future NCL cruise booking discount. Additionally to the celebrity comedy shows, passengers also enjoyed free house wine served with dinner, plus 50% discount on specialty dining cover charges.

  2010Sea Pollution

Twice in 2010 (on May 26 and Sept 15) the ship was reported for water pollution in Alaska. The conducted wastewater tests showed higher than allowed levels of Coliform bacteria.

  July 2009Sea Pollution

Twice in 2009 the ship was reported for Alaska water pollution. The conducted tests of its wastewater showed higher than allowed levels of Coliform bacteria (July 7) and pH (July 28).

  26 December 2008Crew / Passenger Deaths

(overboard) On December 26, 2008, a 36-year-old female passenger jumped overboard. The woman was reported missing by her husband at ~4 am, when the ship was approx 15 ml / 25 km east of Cancun Mexico. The ship conducted search and rescue operation, that failed to find the body. Given the woman’s mental health history, the investigation assumed she committed a suicide.

  27 August 2008Propulsion / Power Loss

On August 27, 2008, during Alaskan cruise, the ship experienced an Azipod problem (propulsion system issue) resulting in reduced cruising speed and itinerary changes. The stay in call port Victoria BC was only formal (passengers were not allowed to disembark), while call port Ketchikan was dropped.

As compensation, passengers received US$50 PP in onboard credit. The propulsion problem (thrust bearing failure) affected also the next itineraries. NCL announced the cancellation of the Oct 26 itinerary, allowing the vessel to enter drydock in Freeport Bahamas for repairs.

All booked passengers were fully refunded, and additionally received 25% future NCL cruise booking discount. On the Panama Canal repositioning cruise from Alaska to Caribbean (Sept 21), the US call ports San Francisco and Los Angeles were dropped, while the port stays in Mexico (Puerto Vallarta, Acapulco) and Colombia (Cartagena) were shortened. All passengers were compensated with US$50 PP in onboard credit. The ship returned to service on Nov 2, 2008.

  17 January 2008Crew / Passenger Crimes

On January 17, 2008, 6 cruise ship passengers were robbed on NCL-sponsored shore excursion in St Lucia. On the Botanical Gardens tour (Soufriere) the passengers (2 from USA, 4 from Canada) and both tour guides were robbed of all their valuables (ID cards, jewelry, money) by 2 masked and armed men.

  2008Sea Pollution

Thrice in 2008 (May, June and July) the vessel was reported for Alaska water pollution. The conducted tests showed higher than allowed pH levels in its wastewater.

  December 2007Cruise Illness / Norovirus Outbreaks

November-December 2007, CDC reported on voyage Nov 30 to Dec 9, a major Norovirus outbreak affected a total of 335 passengers (out of 2377, or 14,1%) and 24 crew (out of 1097, or 2,2%). The ship was on 8-day Eastern Caribbean cruise from Miami.

  17 April 2007Crew / Passenger Deaths

On April 17, 2007, a 35-year-old passenger drowned in Barbados. The accident occurred on NCL-sponsored snorkeling excursion off the island’s west coast. The man was snorkeling together with his wife and other passengers from the ship docked in Bridgetown.

  April 2007Cruise Illness / Norovirus Outbreaks

April 2007, CDC reported on the voyage Apr 13 to 22, a Norovirus outbreak (gastrointestinal illness) infected 92 passengers (out of 2490, or 3,7%) and 7 crew (out of 1084, or 0,7%). All sick suffered from Noro virus symptoms (vomiting, diarrhea) and were quarantined to their cabins for 48 hours. The ship was on 9-day Southern Caribbean cruise from homeport Miami Florida.

  04 November 2006Ship Collision / Allision

On November 4, 2006, after leaving the shipbuilding yard and while attempting to pass under River Ems power line (northwestern Germany), the cruise vessel caused a massive blackout – first in Germany, and then in other European countries.

Officially called “380KV-Ems-Overhead Powerline Crossing”, this power line is mounted on two large pylons – each with clearance / height of 110 m / 361 ft. The span between the pylons has length of 405 m (1329 ft). While the clearance allows cargo ships to pass beneath the power line, some of the Papenburg-built cruise ships (by Meyer Werft) require the powerline to be switched off. Its switching off for the NCL Pearl ship caused the infamous “2006 European blackout” – temporarily leaving over 15 million people without electricity.

Note: This type of marine accidents is called “allision” (striking a fixed object) as opposed to “collision” (striking another vessel).

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