Tourism & Cruises

Norwegian cruise ship leaving Miami rescues four stranded Cuban nationals off Florida coast

PortMiami is the home port for Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Getaway.
PortMiami is the home port for Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Getaway.

Four stranded Cuban nationals were rescued by the Norwegian Getaway earlier this week. The ship delivered them to the ship’s next stop in Cozumel, Mexico.

A Norwegian passenger, who goes by Pico on Twitter, wrote that the stranded sailors were spotted by a “flash in the middle of the ocean.” Cruisers then notified the cruise ship workers, who sent a tender to the vessel.

Pico also posted two videos: One shows the red boat carrying the adrift voyagers; the other apparently depicts the rescued passengers safely on board.

Fox News first reported the story. A Norwegian Cruise Line spokesperson has confirmed the rescue and provided a statement:

The individuals, who are Cuban nationals, were safely brought on board, immediately taken to the ship’s medical facility for evaluation and provided with clothing and food. The Bahamas Maritime Authority and the U.S. Coast Guard were notified by the ship’s captain, who was advised to disembark the rescued individuals at the next port of call in Costa Maya, Mexico on Sept. 4. We are very proud of our team for executing a successful rescue of these individuals.”

Norwegian did not describe the vessel involved or say whether it was disabled.

The 3,963-passenger Getaway is on a weeklong cruise from Miami with stops at Costa Maya, Mexico; Harvest Caye, Belize; and Honduras. The ship is scheduled to return to PortMiami on Sunday.

Chris Gray Faust, managing editor of said that cruise ships are legally required to respond to distress calls under international and U.S. law.

The rescue was the second one in recent weeks. On Aug. 29, a Carnival Cruise Line ship, Carnival Fascination, aided two Barbados fishermen after receiving a distress signal because their boat had run out of gas.

“For cruisers on board, there’s likely not much of an impact,” said Gray Faust in an email. “There might be some delay in arrival to the next port, but itineraries generally stay pretty close to plan, as the ship will continue on its originally planned journey.”