Fire safety fears delay the delivery of Explora Journeys' first ship MSC Explora 1

   July 9, 2023 ,   Accidents

The highly anticipated delivery and inauguration of a luxury cruise ship has been postponed due to safety concerns. Explora I, which is operated by MSC, faced a setback as she lost an important safety certification due to defective fire-resistant panels.

Paroc Group (the Finnish supplier of the insulation panels) notified the Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri that another type of panel had also failed to obtain certification.

Explora I is the first ship of MSC's luxury division/new travel brand Explora Journeys, which plans to operate a total of four vessels. The prices for Explora Journeys cruises range from US$2,000 to US$20,000 per person.

In addition to delaying the launch of the Explora I, Paroc had identified 45 other ships that were equipped with faulty panels. The report also mentioned RCI-Royal Caribbean International as another customer of Paroc.

Currently, there are ~320 operational ocean-going cruise vessels worldwide. This suggests that ~15% of the global fleet may face potential disruption if the panels require replacement.