Kiwi recounts 'harrowing' Viking cruise evacuation

A Kiwi passenger on the Viking Sky, a Norwegian cruise ship that was evacuated on Saturday after multiple engine failures, says the experience was harrowing.

Hector talked to Robert and Jeanette on The Breeze on Wednesday morning, and said he and his wife were terrified when the cruise they were on started to sway, flinging people and furniture into the walls.

"Once people started flying against the walls and all of the furniture started smashing against the walls we thought 'oh, okay this is for real'."

Three of the ship's engines failed off the coast of Norway during a storm, meaning the ship had trouble stabilising in the rough waters.

Hector said people started getting winched off the ship into helicopters, but he and his wife were low on the priority list for evacuation.

"They took all of those who were infirmed or who were older or anyone who was in need of help, and they also took those who were in hysterics, so anyone who was losing the plot.

"I was younger in the demographic so I said to my partner, 'look around you, I think we're going to be probably last on the evac'."

He said once people who were panicking had been taken off the ship, it calmed down a lot. After 24-hours stuck on the ship, he was evacuated by boat.

He said the experience hasn't put him off cruising, saying the company handled the incident well.

"I thought the way that they handled it, I would absolutely cruise with Viking again."


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