Ocean Explorer refloated by fishing trawler at second attempt

Cruise ship Ocean Explorer (IMO 9883194), carrying 206 passengers and crew, whichran aground last week in a remote part of Greenland, with 206 people on board, was pulled free by a fishing trawler on Thursday September 14th. The Ocean Explorer cruise vessel had been stuck since Monday in mud and silt in the Alpefjord national park, which is about 870 miles northeast of Greenland’s capital Nuuk.

Gina Hill, an Australian passenger on board the ship, told Reuters on Thursday that the Ocean Explorer leaned to the side during the operation and passengers were not allowed to go outside.

The Danish military’s Joint Arctic Command confirmed that the ship had been pulled free by the Tarajoq (IMO 9881225), a trawler and research vessel that made a failed attempted to free the Ocean Explorer on Wednesday.

The cruise ship will now be taken to a port to assess any damage, while the passengers will be flown home, said SunStone Maritime Group, which owns the cruise vessel. It added that “there have not been any injuries to any person onboard, no pollution of the environment and no breach of the hull”.

Sydney, Australia-based Aurora Expeditions, chartered the ship and organized the cruise.

The Ocean Explorer is an ‘Infinity-class’ expedition cruise ship built in 2021 by Ulstein at its partner yard China Merchants Heavy Industries. It can accommodate 165 passengers and up to 300 when crew are included.

2021-built, Bahamas-flagged, 8,228 gt Ocean Explorer is owned and managed by Ocean Explorer Owner Ltd. ISM manager is Anglo-Eastern Cruise Ltd of Miami, Florida. It is entered with Steamship Mutual on behalf of Ocean Explorer Owner Ltd.

2021-built, Denmark-flagged, 2,896 gt Tarajoq is owned and managed by Gronlands Naturinstitut of Nuusuuaq, Greenland. It is entered with Gard on behalf of Mar de Basauri Greenland, filial af Mar.