Empress of the North will be returning to service on July, 7 after undergoing drydock repairs in Portland, Oregon.
My question is: Would you travel on a ship so soon after a grounding like what took place on the Empress of the North?
I checked "Only if the price was right" but that's an essential condition for any cruise.
Fundamentally, a ship that runs aground, etc., and goes into the shipyard for repairs must meet U. S. Coast Guard inspection, including the same tests for watertight integrity as a newbuild, before again sailing from any U. S. port with passengers embarked. Thus, there's no reason to expect such a vessel to be unsafe in any way. Also, most cruise lines will utilize the time that the vessel is in the shipyard to maximum advantage by having the shipyard complete as much other pending work and imminent maintenance as possible while the repairs are in process.
The only real risk of sailing such a vessel on her first voyage or two when she returns to service is basically the same as that of booking the maiden voyage of a vessel or any other sailing right after a vessel emerges from the yards. There's always some risk that the work may take longer than projected and thus either delay the ship's return to service or still be in process when the ship does return to service.
I'm with Michael on this one. I wouldn't be so concerned with the structural integrity of the ship, as much as I would be with the command staff of the ship.
This ship has had numerous incidents in recent years. If it's the same crew -- or especially if it's the same C.O., they all should be relieved of duty.
I know of two grounding incidents in the U.S. Navy in which this occurred. The first was with the battleship, Missouri, back in the '50's I believe. The Navy employs civilian pilots to guide ships into harbors. In this incident, the pilot gave incorrect instructions, and caused the ship to run aground on the East Coast. The ship was aground for a couple of days before it was refloated. Missouri's commanding officer was relieved of command over the incident, because he is ultimately responsible for his ship no matter what.
The second incident was more recent, when an aircraft carrier was run aground in San Franciso Bay by another civilian pilot. It took an entire day, with most of the crew up on the flight deck, and on one side of it, in order to free the ship. And again, the commanding officer was held responsible, and relieved of command. This particular captain was next in line for promotion to Rear Admiral, and was sent to the bottom of the promotion list. He was assigned a desk job, and several years later, retired with the rank of Captain.