January 31, 2016 – Emerald Waterways is sad to report that a late night fire broke out the Den Breejen Shipyard in the Netherlands where the company’s newest ship, the Emerald Belle, was under construction. Sister line, Scenic, also had a ship under construction nearby but it was quickly moved away so damage was contained to some exterior paint.
“At 12:30 am (UTC+1:00) Sunday morning, the owner of the Den Breejen Shipyard was alerted to a fire on the Emerald Belle,” states Glen Moroney, chairman of the Scenic Group, and owners of the Emerald Waterways line. “Despite the efforts of firefighters, who were quickly at the scene, the damage is significant. We are grateful and relieved that nobody was onboard at the time and most importantly, there were no injuries to any shipyard worker or firefighters to our knowledge.”
Although the Emerald Belle’s construction was well along (as it was due to launch in April) the firefighting system onboard was not yet operational. At this point there is no confirmed cause of the fire but a full investigation by the yard and firefighting authorities is being carried out.
Current feedback from the shipyard and the authorities is the damage to the Belle is significant and may well delay any launch. In that regard, the Emerald Waterways operations and reservations teams are reviewing all bookings to see how best to accommodate guests on similar departures on other Emerald ships or possibly on her sister company, Scenic.
Guests and agents with bookings will be contacted by the Manchester call centre team in the next few days to discuss options. You may also call the Emerald Waterways’ reservations line on 0800 270 7017.
Below are a selection of Q and A's to help answer any questions you may have;
Q - Which ships are affected?
A - Only cruises travelling on the Emerald Belle are affected. If you are travelling on the Emerald Sky, Emerald Star, Emerald Sun or Emerald Dawn your cruises will not be affected by this weekend's events.
Q - How do I find out if I was due to travel on the Emerald Belle?
A - The ship you are travelling on will be displayed on your invoice which you will have received shortly after booking.
Q – What should I do if I am due to travel on the Emerald Belle?
A – We are working quickly to contact each guest (or each guest’s travel agent). We are doing this in date order and currently we are looking at all departures up to and including July 2016. When we make contact we will discuss various options available to you.
Q – I want to travel in 2017, will my trip be affected?
A – No, all 2017 departures will operate as confirmed.
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