By Deandrea Hamilton
#TheBahamas, June 6, 2022 – Carnival Freedom is currently undergoing 10-days of repair work at Grand Bahama Shipyard in Freeport, following a gutting fire which broke out as the ship berthed in Grand Turk on May 26.
The iconic exhaust funnel was badly burned; the starboard side of the tail destroyed and rendered the cruise vessel inoperable.
Carnival Freedom’s emergency response team quickly activated and extinguished a fire inside the ship’s funnel while the ship was in Grand Turk. The cruise line company also said: “Carnival apologized to all those guests who are impacted and offered special thanks to the crew who handled the situation on the ship effectively and according to safety protocols.”
The 2,504 passengers who were meant to spend some hours in Grand Turk, Turks and Caicos Islands remained there two extra days until they were fetched by the Carnival Conquest.
“All guests and crew are safe, and the ship’s guests were cleared by local authorities to go ashore,” informed Carnival in another statement.
It is reported that in the wee hours of May 30, the passengers arrived back at Port Canaveral and will be compensated for their voyage which ended up giving them less destinations and keeping them at sea longer than was planned.
Carnival Cruise Line stated, “We are grateful to our guests for their support as our team worked this weekend to bring them back to Port Canaveral on Carnival Conquest, and we remain proud of our Carnival Freedom crew who handled the situation on the ship effectively and according to safety protocols.”
The ‘Freedom’ will be out of commission until early June and its May 28, June 2 and June 6 departures have been cancelled to facilitate the repairs.
It is reported that repairs at the Grand Bahama Shipyard will be complete by June 10.
For now, the June 11 sailing is still scheduled to go ahead as planned. Guests booked on canceled cruises will receive a full refund on all monies paid and a 100% future cruise credit.
Bahamas as Caribbean top 2024 Spring Destination
#Bahamas#Tourism, February 23rd, 2024 – The Bahamas has been categorized as the most popular Caribbean destination for travel in the upcoming spring season by travel insurance company Squaremouth, in a new report. It was the only Caribbean nation to make the list for the top 10 destinations. The report is derived from travel insurance purchases made through Squaremouth.
Regional Soldiers head to Jamaica to train for pending Haiti mission
#Haiti#KenyaMultinationalForce#CARICOM, February 22nd, 2024 – About 150 Bahamian soldiers are heading to Jamaica within the next one or two weeks for a joint training with Jamaican soldiers, in preparation for the pending Kenya led multinational force mission to Haiti according to Bahamian Defense Chief Commodore, Raymond King, in reports. Soldiers and security forces from Chile and Argentina will also travel to Jamaica for the training.
King informs that Kenya and Haiti are in the process of signing off on an agreement to allow Kenya to lead the force into Haiti, following advice from Kenya’s High Court which recently deemed Kenya’s decision to deploy police officers to the gang run nation as unconstitutional. This agreement includes a formal request for assistance from Haiti, allowing Kenya to legally intervene on the ground.
Major plans for The Bahamas announced Davis
#Bahamas#Development,February 22nd, 2024 – “Things are changing in The Bahamas,” were the words of Prime Minister Philip Davis as he outlined some of the Government’s plans to improve the nation through a decrease in the cost of living, enhanced security for Bahamians and the expansion of access to opportunities. Davis, who was presenting on February 21st, the Bahamas Mid-Year Review of the fiscal performance for the fiscal year 2023/2024, highlighted a long list of plans for the archipelago.
Here’s the full list stated in Davis’ address :
- A new energy policy and an expansion of renewable energy, including microgrids, and an emphasis on engaging local Bahamian firms and building local professional capacity;
- An expansion of Bahamian ownership in our economy, including support for entrepreneurs, small and medium sized enterprises, and an expansion of affordable housing –with hundreds of families moving into new homes by this summer;
- A modern and award-winning specialized tourism product, with new investments across our archipelago, and major visibility and branding campaigns in New York, Florida, and the UK;
- Progress on redeveloping downtown Nassau, long overdue;
- New commitments to education, including a Parental Engagement Unit; more teacher training, modernizing the curriculum, classroom enhancements, improving school attendance, and using the Renaissance testing results to design individualized support for students;
- An expansion of technical and vocational training, including certification at the high school level;
- An Empower Grand Bahama micro-grant programme for entrepreneurs; $1.5 billion in investments for Grand Bahama in the pipeline; the Beautiful Grand Bahama programme, in which collaboration has led to safer communities; and Collab Grand Bahama, which fosters partnerships between the government and the private sector to bring change and progress to Grand Bahama;
- Major upgrades to our health infrastructure;
- More support for our athletes and sports programmes;
- We’re on track to pave 65 miles of road in New Providence alone this year;
- Investments in NIB to improve fairness and efficiency;
- A National School Breakfast pilot programme, which is already giving thousands of our children breakfast in their primary schools, and is ready to expand;
- New classes, camps, lessons, and programmes at our Urban Renewal Centres;
- A Youth Guard to strengthen our capacity during national emergencies, and give more young Bahamians a path forward;
- A Task Force addressing unregulated shantytowns in New Providence and Abaco, with other islands to follow;
- The selection and training of new immigration officers;
- Saturation patrols and new investments and collaboration in crime prevention;
- A juvenile detention facility;
- A cadre of officers trained to recognize and manage psychiatric issues;
- Stronger partnerships and new patrol vessels to secure our nation’s borders;
- Major new investments across our Family Islands, including new airports, and road paving in Andros, Bimini, Cat Island, Abaco, Long Island; Great Harbour Cay, and Crooked Island;
- The development of our nation’s blue carbon credits strategy; and
- A major investment in agriculture and national food security.
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