Stranded cruise ship heads to Malaysia

Cruise ship Azamara Quest suffered from a fire in its engine room. [ABC]

Cruise ship Azamara Quest suffered from a fire in its engine room. [ABC]

Last Updated: Sun, 1 Apr 2012 13:18:00 +1000

A luxury cruise ship is drifting near the Philippines with 1000 passengers on board after a fire broke out in the engine room.

The fire, which broke out on the Azamara Quest on Friday, left four crew members injured and one crew member seriously injured.

The fire was contained but the liner was left adrift without propulsion in calm waters in the Sulu Sea.

Engineers have now restored limited power and the ship is heading to Malaysia, where it is due to dock at Sandakan within the next two days.

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFAT) has confirmed 89 of the 1,000 passengers and crew on board the luxury liner are Australians.

In a statement, the company described passenger sentiment on board the ship as "calm and upbeat".

The vessel left Hong Kong on Monday for a 17-night voyage - the remainder of which has been cancelled.

It left Manila, its first port call, on Wednesday and had also been due to make port calls on Balikpapan, Palapo, Benoa Bali, Semarang and Komodo in Indonesia before sailing to Singapore.

The company said it will fully refund the passengers as a "gesture of goodwill" and provide each guest with a future cruise certificate for the amount paid for the aborted voyage.


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