Antarctic Cruise Ship Runs Aground

The Antarctic cruise ship the M/V Ocean Nova has run aground in Marguerite Bay, near the Antarctic Peninsula, with 106 passengers and crew aboard. According to this story, from The Guardian, there is no immediate threat to anyone on board the vessel.

Quark Expeditions, the tour operator running the Ocean Nova, is posting updates for the press on their website, and reports that ship is not leaking fuel, and that the captain was waiting for high tide to return in the hopes that it would help in freeing the ship from the rocks. Since that dispatch however, two high tides have come and gone, and there is no word that the ship has been freed. Meanwhile, another ship, the M/V Clipper Adventurer is en route to pick-up the passengers and return them to Ushuaia, Argentina.

Jon Bowermaster, a frequent contributor to Gadling, has updated his blog this morning with information on the incident, including his own thoughts. He was in the region in December, and feels that it will take unusually high tides to dislodge the ship and get it back on its way.

This is the second incident of a ship running aground in Antarctica in the past few months. Back in December the M/V Ushuaia ran aground in Wilhelmina Bay, and last year the Explorer sank after hitting an iceberg. These incidences help to underscore the dangers of traveling in the Antarctic.

UPDATE: The M/V Ocean Nova has been freed by high tides.

More ice cold news we’ve covered in the past – Brrrrr!