Holland America Line Performs Two Life-Saving Missions

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Two ships from the Holland America Line fleet have performed life-saving rescues of sailors trapped at sea within the space of three days this month. Both missions were successful with all crew members safely brought aboard the respective cruise liner.

On 3 January, the ms Zuiderdam answered a distress call from a small private Bahamian inter-island vessel, Excalibur, which was sinking with eight crew members aboard. Fortunately the Zuiderdam was only 15 miles from the location of the sinking ship and quickly responded to the call for help. All crew members were saved and brought aboard at 3.01am and provided with food and accommodation.

The Zuiderdam is currently nearing the end of a 10-night Panama Canal round-trip cruise from Fort Lauderdale.

Orlando Ashford, president of Holland America Line, was beaming in his praise for all who took part in the rescue mission: “Congratulations to the officers and crew on board Zuiderdam for their quick response that saved the lives of eight people. We are proud to be able to come to the rescue when called upon, and it’s even more gratifying when everything goes as smoothly as this operation did.”

The just over 24 hours later, the ms Zaandam was called upon to rescue seven crew members from the sailing yacht, Polonus, who were staying at the Arctowski Polish research station at King George Island in Antarctica. The crew became stranded when their yacht went aground before being rescued by the Zaandam team. They are due to be delivered to Buenos Aires, Argentina by the Zaandam on 11 January.

Images courtesy of Port of San Diego from San Diego, CA (Port Welcomes Three Cruise Ships on May 7, 2013) via Wikimedia Commons

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Claire Wilde

Claire has worked in the travel industry since leaving college in 1994. One of this blog's most regular contributors, Claire covers cruise news and industry trends.

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