Carnival Cruise Passengers Return To Cars Destroyed By Storm

Cruise ships are terrible for the environment, breeding grounds for everything from norovirus to Covid and often end up costing more than expected, but at least if you take one, you can generally expect to be able to drive home once it’s over. That ended up not being the case for dozens of Carnival Cruise passengers who returned to port in Charleston, South Carolina only to find that a massive storm had destroyed their cars, WCSC reports.

From the sound of it, the cruise itself wasn’t even much fun, as passengers told the news outlet they dealt with rough seas throughout the entire five-day trip. So flooding from the storm destroying their cars only added insult to injury. And not only did many passengers not know Charleston can be prone to flooding, but also, not having cell service meant they weren’t getting regular news updates, so the flooding was a total surprise.

“We got to the cars, and honestly, we’ve never seen anything like it. Everybody had their hoods up, it was crazy. The folks parked next to us had informed us that the cars had flooded and that the engines were history, and nobody’s car was starting,” Stephanie Royal told WCSC. “We weren’t really sure what was going on. When I checked my car, it was flooded, the water had come up at least three to four feet.”

Her husband, Wesley also added, “It would have been nice if they had informed us that this had occurred, and if they had some assistance out there. Assistance would have been more appreciated by me and my wife, and other people to guide us on what to do because we don’t live in Charleston. We’re out of town.”

Carnival has since issued a statement saying:

We regret that some of our guests’ vehicles parked in the garage were impacted by the recent storm. We have let officials know that people were unhappy, and we suggest you contact the parking authorities. We assisted in some ways where we could, for instance with helping guests connect with their insurance providers, but ultimately this was not our facility.

The South Carolina Ports Authority has also issued a statement that reads:

The recent record high tide and unprecedented flooding that occurred throughout downtown Charleston resulted in some cruise passenger vehicles being impacted. The South Carolina Ports team worked closely with passengers to provide assistance from the moment they arrived until the last passenger departed the terminal. Port police ensured passengers had the necessary reports to document damage for their insurance companies. Passengers were not charged for additional days to use the parking lot and are able to leave their vehicles as long as necessary. Port staff worked around the clock to call tow companies on behalf of passengers, assist with jumping vehicles and pumping out water, and helping them find transportation to area hotels. While SC Ports does not assume liability for vehicles or personal property left in the passenger parking areas, we are committed to continuing to support our valued cruise customers.

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