Viking Sky berths safely in Molde

Cruise ship Viking Sky (IMO 9650420) berthed safely in Molde during the afternoon of March 24th. Four tugs helped the ship into the Molde-Fjord. The ship would now be surveyed.

Whether the 915 passengers remaining on the ship would have to be returned home by other means would depend on the length of the investigations and the amount of repairs required. The cruise had been scheduled to end in Amsterdam on March 27th. That same day the Viking Sky was due to sail on a short cruise via Hamburg to Kiel.

Viking Sky had lost power on Saturday March 23rd while sailing from Tromso to Stavanger, forcing an evacuation order in heavy seas. She had covered some two-thirds of her route when she suffered complete engine failure. One of the engines was restarted only a short time before she could have run aground. The captain had ordered an evacuation of the 1,373 people on board when the situation appeared critical. Most of those on board were said to be either British or American.

Five helicopters and several rescue ships headed for the vessel, but the severe weather prevented the lifeboats from reaching the ship. This drastically slowed the rate of evacuation and increased the hazards. Eventually some of the engines were restarted, and the evacuation was halted.

Viking Cruises said on Sunday that, of the 1,373 people originally on board, 894 guests and crew remained on the ship. That number appeared to have risen to 915 by Monday’s estimates. The company said that the 479 who were airlifted were on shore, and arrangements were being made to fly them home. There were 20 injuries.

2017-built, Norway-flagged, 47,842 gt Viking Sky is owned by Viking Ocean Cruises Ship II care of manager Viking River Cruises Inc of Woodland Hills, California, USA. ISM manager is Wilhelmsen Ship Management AS of Lysaker, Norway. It is entered with Steamship Mutual (Smuab) (European syndicate) on behalf of Viking Ocean Cruises Ship II.