Fire-damaged cruise ship out of service until Jan. - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Fire-damaged cruise ship out of service until Jan.

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SAN DIEGO (CNS) - The cruise ship left dead in the water off Mexico after an engine fire will be out of commission until until mid-January, Carnival Cruise Line officials said Tuesday.

The 952-foot Carnival Splendor was towed to San Diego and docked Thursday morning. About 4,500 vacationers and crew members spent three days mostly without electricity.

A Nov. 8 fire in the aft engine room left the normally luxurious ship dead in the water about 150 miles south of San Diego and 55 miles west of Punta San Jacinto.

All Splendor voyages planned through Jan. 9 are canceled, according to Carnival Cruise Line, which said the cruise ship would set sail next on Jan. 16.

Travelers who had already booked tickets for the canceled voyages will receive a full refund for the cruise and any air-transportation costs, along with a 25 percent discount on a future cruise. Those who were aboard the Splendor at the time of the fire will get refunds, plus a complimentary cruise equal to the amount paid for the aborted voyage.

At the time of the fire, the Splendor was on the first leg of a seven-day Mexican Riviera tour that had departed Long Beach the previous day.

A team from the U.S. Coast Guard, National Transportation Safety Board and flag authorities, along with Carnival engineers and technicians, are investigating the cause of the fire.

No one aboard was injured during the emergency, though several people reportedly suffered panic attacks.

When the vessel docked, a woman passenger was arrested on a grand-theft warrant out of Nevada, port spokeswoman Marguerite Elicone said.

The Splendor was towed to San Diego by six tugboats, U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer Allyson Conroy said.

Several U.S. military vessels, including the Coronado-based aircraft carrier Ronald Reagan, aided the occupants of the disabled liner during the ordeal, delivering emergency supplies, providing security and helping coordinate the return to safe harbor.

The Panamanian-flagged cruise ship partially was powered by auxiliary generators after the fire, but the ship's engineers were unable to restore its propulsion systems.

Many of the customers had to endure hot, stuffy staterooms, and some sought relief by sleeping in open-air deck areas set aside by the crew for that purpose, according to Carnival President and CEO Gerry Cahill. They also were briefly without working restrooms.

The normal itinerary of the Splendor, which entered service in July 2008, includes stops in Puerto Vallarta, Mazatlan and Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.

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