Cruise Passengers Told to Turn off Lights, Music for 10 Days to Avoid Pirate Attack
Passengers on a luxury cruise were subject to nighttime blackouts and ordered by the captain to go without the standard entertainment for 10 days because of a pirate threat, according to a report on news.com.au.
The 1,900 passengers on board the Sea Princess, who paid tens of thousands of dollars for a 104-day world cruise, were told all curtains must be drawn and and shutters closed as the vessel was turned into a “ghost ship,” the report said.
Carolyne Jasinski, a passenger, said the blackout occurred for 10 days as the ship traveled across the Indian Ocean, the Arabian Sea, the Gulf of Aden and the Suez Canal.
The captain told passengers the threat was real and the ship “must be prepared for a pirate attack.”
“No deck parties, no movies under the stars, no late-night outdoor bar hopping or pool dipping,” Jasinski wrote in an account on news.com.au. “No lights, no party atmosphere, no lapping up tropical breezes on their balconies.”
The captain assured them that they could outrun any pirates, but, just in case, the crew set up powerful hoses to knock pirates off ladders, as well as a detergent solution to keep them from getting a good grip, Jasinski wrote. “If all else failed, there was the sonic boom — we were told it can knock pirates off their feet (or ladders if they get too close).”
Passengers who took an interest in the threat “drove the captain nuts,” Jasinski wrote, as they were making several calls to the bridge to report suspicious boats.
“He had to ask passengers to stop calling and to trust in the officers who were on watch,” she wrote.
A spokesperson for the operator of the cruise told the Telegraph the ship was not facing a specific threat from pirates but the actions were taken as a cautionary measure.
“Passengers took it all in their stride,” according to Jasinski.