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Passengers are stuck on a cruise ship

The 800 passengers on Viking Orion may have imagined their turn-of-the-year journey differently. The landings in New Zealand and Australia were canceled due to microorganisms on the ship’s hull, which had to be removed first.

End the year with fireworks, as here in Melbourne, Australia, stumble upon 800 ship passengers: They weren’t allowed to leave a cruise ship because of microorganisms on the hull.

Imago / Diego Fidel

(dpa) They really wanted to celebrate the start of the year with a cruise from New Zealand to Australia – but then the dream trip turned into a nightmare: due to the spread of microorganisms on the hull of their ship, about 800 passengers of the Viking Orion were not allowed ashore for a week. The Australian news agency AAP reported that “marine growths” had formed on the outer wall of the luxury liner, the so-called “biofouling”. Colonization by organisms can lead to the introduction and spread of non-native species. Australia has very strict rules on biosecurity risks, Among other things, to protect the unique flora and fauna.