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Cruise ship suffers stopped-up toilets

By Katia Hetter, CNN
updated 2:38 PM EDT, Mon April 15, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • A ship in the Carnival Corp. portfolio experienced toilet problems on a recent sailing
  • Princess Cruises' Crown Princess had non-working toilets in 410 staterooms
  • Affected passengers received a $50 credit

(CNN) -- Another cruise ship, another problem with malfunctioning toilets.

This time, Carnival Corp. subsidiary Princess Cruises had passengers feeling the impact of toilets that wouldn't flush.

On April 11, the cruise line's Crown Princess was on a seven-day Caribbean cruise when a blockage within the ship's vacuum toilet system rendered 410 stateroom toilets inoperable from 5 a.m. to 6:30 p.m., according to Princess Cruises spokeswoman Karen Candy. The ship has more than 1,500 cabins.

"A small number of passengers continued to experience problems over the next few days which were addressed by the shipboard technical team," Candy wrote in an e-mail.

The ship's itinerary wasn't affected by the flushing problems, and affected passengers were offered $50 apiece in compensation, Candy wrote. "The blockages have been addressed and we are continuing to review the situation to ensure that the system is working with optimum pressure levels."

Although Candy didn't answer questions about the cause of the problem, members of the CruiseCritic.com website discussed the possibility of passengers tossing prohibited objects into the toilets and causing the blockage.

"Toilet problems can happen on any ship when passengers flush the wrong things down the toilet," wrote member Astro Flyer, who was not aboard the Crown Princess.

In February, an engine room fire left the Carnival Triumph adrift in the Gulf of Mexico, with passengers reporting overflowing toilets and human waste running down the walls in some parts of the ship. On a March cruise, the Carnival Dream lost power, and some toilets stopped working. Both ships are part of Carnival Cruise Line, another subsidiary of Carnival Corp.

Candy wrote that "passengers were kept continuously updated about the progress of the repairs." But a CruiseCritic member posting under the handle EB and Curly said they were in an affected cabin and "were never informed as to the status of repairs." However, they were "only totally without a toilet for about 24 hours. It did overflow one night and we had to call maintenance to come up at 1:00 a.m."

CruiseCritic.com reported that the ship left Galveston, Texas, on April 13 for its scheduled trans-Atlantic repositioning cruise to Europe.

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