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Royal Caribbean will restart cruises from Baltimore at end of May following bridge collapse

15 May 2024
Matt Hochberg

Cruises are go for restart in the Port of Baltimore.

Vision of the Seas will restart cruises from Baltimore

The collapse of the Francis Scott Key Bridge in Baltimore occurred on March 26 when the cargo ship Dali smashed into the bridge. 

The collision brought down the 1.6-mile long steel structure, killed six construction workers on the bridge and severed access to critical shipping routes in and out of the Port of Baltimore.

According to the Port of Baltimore, cruises will be able to resume beginning with a Royal Caribbean ship.

Baltimore social media post

"Get ready…the Port of Baltimore is ready to cruise once again! Royal Caribbean International's Vision of the Seas will depart on May 25th for a fantastic 5-night voyage from Baltimore to Bermuda," is what the port shared on their social media channel on Wednesday.

"This marks the first cruise departing Baltimore since the Key Bridge incident."

The May 25th sailing is a 5-night cruise that spends two days in Bermuda, with a sea day before and after.

Royal Caribbean's Vision of the Seas sails out of Maryland, offering cruises to the Bahamas, Southern Caribbean, Bermuda, and Canada/New England. Other cruise lines, such as Norwegian and Carnival, sail from Baltimore, too. 

What happened to the Key Bridge?

Key Bridge in Baltimore

On March 26, a cargo ship, weighing about 213 million pounds, had lost engine and electrical power shortly before hitting the Francis Scott Key Bridge.

A 24-page report by the National Transportation Safety Board explains the ship had a pair of catastrophic electrical failures minutes before the crash.

According to the report, the two power outages occurred three ships’ lengths from the bridge and were triggered by the tripping of two critical circuit breakers, which caused several pumps required for the ship’s single propeller and its single rudder to stop working. The emergency generator was not configured to power the ship.

Key Bridge collapse

An NTSB preliminary report does not conclude a probable cause. Those findings will be part of a final report that could take investigators up to two years to complete.

Meer moments after the collision, the bridge collapsed, sending vehicles and people into the Patapsco River. Six construction workers who were filling potholes on the bridge were killed in the disaster.

Maryland Gov. Wes Moore indicated the bridge's collapse has had a substantial effect on the region's infrastructure. The wreckage of the bridge has clogged the port, a major shipping channel for the sugar and automotive industries. In addition, the Key Bridge was a critical thoroughfare, with 30,000 commuters relying on it every day.

Officials have vowed to rebuild the bridge – but the exact cost remains unclear. A spokesperson for the Insurance Information Institute has estimated the bridge alone could be worth more than $1.2 billion.

Matt started Royal Caribbean Blog in 2010 as a place to share his passion for all things Royal Caribbean with readers. He oversees all the writers at Royal Caribbean Blog, and writes a great deal of content on a daily basis.  He has become one of the foremost expert on a Royal Caribbean cruise.

Over the years, he has reached Pinnacle Club status with Royal Caribbean's customer loyalty program.

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