According to CNN, "the cruise ship Empress of the North is taking on water off the Alaska coast and more than 200 people are being evacuated in lifeboats."
Here is a picture of the ship.
This is not the first time that the Empress of the North has run aground; it happened a few years ago in the Columbia River.
An update from CNN:
JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) -- A cruise ship ran aground off the Alaska coast early Monday, and more than 200 passengers were being transferred to life boats and other vessels, Coast Guard officials said.
There were no immediate reports of injuries.
The 299-foot Empress of the North, carrying 281 people, was listing by about 6 degrees after hitting Hanus Rock at the southern end of the Icy Strait southwest of Juneau, said Petty Officer Christopher D. McLaughlin at the Coast Guard base in Kodiak.
A Coast Guard fixed-wing aircraft and helicopter were dispatched after an emergency radio message was received at 12:35 a.m. from the ship, operated by Majestic America Line of Seattle, McLaughlin said.
McLaughlin said the reason for the grounding was unclear, but he said the ship was not believed to be taking on water.
Luckily, there appear to be no injuries and all passengers were able to get off the ship with incident. I am sure we will be reading much more about this story in the days to come.
Mary Lou Scanlon
NCL Pride of America April 24, 2010
NCL Epic February 12, 2011
RCCL Allure of the Seas - September 18, 2011
Celebrity Eclipse - February 11, 2012:
RCCL Navigator OTS - February 9, 2013
I'm glad that no one was injured. The paddle wheeled steamboat, Empress of the North, cruises the inside passage for Majestic Lines of Seattle.
If you get right down to it, it is a cruise ship and is covered by all U.S. Coast Guard and SOLAS regulations. There will be an investigation and we'll find out the whole story but the lack of injuries and the fact the ship didn't sink did show that some things were done right.
There are numerous vessels that travel the Alaskan Marine Highway for commercial, tourism and commerce.
I am looking forward to hearing from the passengers on this one.
__________________ Cruisemates Community Leader/Moderator
"There is a great difference between being well traveled and just having been to many places." ~Me