The high seas weren’t playing games for one cruise line around Norways western coast, and the effects were terrifying.
According to The Washington Post, the Viking Sky cruise ship faced danger on Saturday when the engine failed right in the middle of the sea, causing it to float adrift. With 26-foot waves and wind gusts of 43 mph, passengers were met with chaos inside.
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Plants, lounge furniture and a piano slid across the floor with each ship tilt. Even ceiling panels fell to the ground, and ice cold water smashed through broken windows.
For 24 hours, the 1,373 people onboard endured tough conditions as rescued teams aimed to evacuate folks one by one. Smaller rescue boats couldn’t do the job safely considering the high seas, so Norwegian authorities had to airlift passengers from the ship.
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One American passenger from Minnesota, Rodney Horgen, told the Associate Press that as a seasoned fisherman, he hadn’t experienced anything like he’d experienced aboard the Viking Sky. He said a six-foot wall of water crashed through a door and windows and lifted some passengers 30 feet across the floor.
“That was the breaker. I said to myself, ‘This is it,’ ” Horgen said. “I grabbed my wife, but I couldn’t hold on. And she was thrown across the room. And then she got thrown back again by the wave coming back.”
One Alexus Sheppard, documented the chaos and the rescue process on Twitter.
“It was frightening at first,” she told the Associated Press. “And when the general alarm sounded, it became very real.”
One of Sheppard’s videos showing the disaster has already received over 8 million views on Twitter.
by 10 a.m. on Sunday, three of the ship’s four engines were working in Norway. Th ship, which carried 436 guests and 458 crew members, headed towards dry land.
In total, 479 passengers were airlifted, and twenty people were injured and were being treated at hospitals in Norway.
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