Star Breeze accidents and incidents

Star Breeze cruise ship

Former names
Seabourn Spirit

Length (LOA)
159 m / 522 ft

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CruiseMapper's Star Breeze cruise ship accidents, incidents and law news reports relate to a 343-passenger vessel owned by Windstar Cruises. Our Star Breeze 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could be arrests, filed lawsuits against the shipowner / cruise line company, charges and fines, grievances, settled / withdrawn legal actions, lost cases, virus outbreaks, etc.

  • renamed from “Seabourn Spirit” in 2015 (transferred from Seabourn Cruises)
  • fire – 2006
  • pirate attack – 2005 (Somalia)
  • pollution – 2015 (St Maarten USVI)
  • injuries/crimes – overboard/rescued (2015)

In 2013, the current shipowner Windstar announced that the Seabourn ship Spirit would be renamed to “Star Breeze” in May 2015. The ship left the fleet of Seabourn in April 2015 and entered the fleet of Windstar on May 6.

22 December 2015Boat Rescue

On December 22, 2015, the ship assisted its fleet mate Star Pride by accommodating 69 passengers (plus the crew) and carrying them to Costa Rica (port Golfito). The Windstar Pride ship ran aground while anchoring at Isla de Coiba (off Panama’s coast), resulting in hull damages that made it unseaworthy.

The incident occurred during Windstar Breeze ship’s 7-day Panama Canal "Christmas Cruise" (itinerary Dec 19-26 from Puerto Caldera to Colon) with call ports in Costa Rica and Panama (Quepos, Bahia Drake, Golfito, Isla De Coiba, Panama City, Panama Canal). For the inconvenience, all Star Breeze passengers were compensated with 75% refund plus 75% future Windstar cruise booking discount.

07 December 2015Sea Pollution

On December 7, 2015, the vessel was reported for water pollution by Saint Maarten Nature Foundation. The organization’s staff contacted the harbour of St Maarten USVI and the local department of Maritime Affairs requiring an investigation for wastewater dumping at the cruise terminal in the morning on December 5.

Investigation showed that due to faulty equipment, the cruise ship’s wastewater tank overflowed and a significant amount of wastewater polluted the sea. Even though incident report and pollution complaint were officially issued, due to the unavailability of a public prosecutor, the USCG issued only a warning and allowed the ship to depart without fine.

08 November 2015Crew / Passenger Injuries and Overboards

(overboard) On November 8, 2015, a 43-year-old female passenger was reported fell overboard and missing. The accident occurred while the ship was in the Mediterranean Sea and between Civitavecchia-Rome (Italy) and Portoferraio (Elba, Italy). Fortunately, the woman (of US origin) was rescued alive after being over an hour in the open sea. Investigation showed that before she jumped overboard, the woman had an argument with her boyfriend and was influenced by alcohol.

20 December 2006Fire Accident

(Seabourn Spirit) On December 20, 2006, at ~7 am, the ship experienced a small fire accident right before the arrival in call port Hong Kong China. After docking, the vessel was approached by fire engines and a firefighting tugboat. Apparently, the crew managed the emergency appropriately and the assistance was not needed.

05 November 2005Pirates / Terrorist Attacks

(Seabourn Spirit/pirate attack) On November 5, 2005, the cruise ship carrying 115 passengers was approx 70 ml / 115 km off Somalia’s coast. At 5:50 am, the vessel was approached by two pirate skiffs (speedboats launched by a bigger ship). The attacking Somali pirates fired at the ship with machine guns and also with PRGs (rocket-propelled grenades). One of the grenades wedged itself in a cruise cabin’s wall. The unexploded grenade was later disarmed by the military crew from USS Gonzalez (Burke-class US Navy destroyer ship) sent to assist the cruise ship after the pirate attack. Reportedly, a second RPG bounced off the cruise ship’s stern.

No passenger injuries were reported. However, two of the crew – Som Bahadur Gurung (Master-at-Arms, a former Gurkha soldier) and Michael Groves (Security officer) – suffered minor injuries after being hit by shrapnel. They were combating the attackers with the ship’s own LRAD (“Long Range Acoustic Device”). With the help of this device, the Seabourn cruise ship managed to repel the raiding pirates by projecting a powerful sound wave. Both injured crew were honoured for bravery by HM Queen Elizabeth II on May 16, 2007, at a ceremony in the Buckingham Palace (London, England).

After the pirate attack, the Seabourn Spirit cruise ship changed its itinerary course from Mombasa (Kenya) to Port Victoria (Seychelles) for repairs. It sailed to Singapore and resumed its original schedule.

Notes: According to the USCG issued “Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act” (passed by CLIA in 2010), cruise ships sailing in certain high-risk areas are required to have acoustic hailing devices (AHD). These devices consist of specialized loudspeakers emitting a high-volume and high-power sound waves directed toward attacking marine vessels. The effect is intense pain to the ears of the attackers. LRADs were introduced in 2002. Such “sound weapons” are usually used for crowd control, mass notification, critical infrastructure protection, wildlife protection and control. Such devices are used by law enforcement, military and various commercial groups.

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