Y’all AIN’T GONNA BELIEVE THIS!! Click on this video to see what happened while we were in Cozumel! The most exciting thing to happen on our trip and we were sleeping through it (on another ship)!!
While we were in the harbor at the Cayman Islands (on Wednesday, 1/7/15), we saw 3 other cruise ships out in the water with us — another Carnival ship (Freedom), a Holland America ship (Nieuw Amsterdam), and a Disney ship (we couldn’t see the name). It’s a “tender port” which means that the harbor is too shallow for large ships to dock, so they send little boats out to the moored cruise ships and bring passengers ashore. All four ships were in the water off Cayman, and three of the ships (the two Carnivals and Disney) headed toward Cozumel within hours of each other at the end of the day on Wednesday.
All ships coming into Grand Cayman port have to anchor off-shore and passengers are put on water-taxis to get to the shore.
During the wee hours of Thursday morning, as we were steaming toward Cozumel (we were on the last of the 4 ships to arrive in Cozumel), a 22-year-old man “fell overboard” off a Royal Caribbean ship (Oasis of the Seas, the largest cruise ship in the world) as it approached Cozumel port from elsewhere. Don’t know how far out to sea the ship still was, but in this video, the waves were “open water” waves. Shortly (not sure yet how long the man had to tread water) after he fell in, the Disney Magic was making toward port. David Hearn and his daughter, on the Magic, were on deck at 6:30 a.m. to watch the Magic come into port and they heard a “weird bird cry.”
Out in the open sea, they could barely see arms being waved at the ship, and they contacted a crew member, who propelled a life preserver overboard (it has a gas cartridge beside it on the ship’s railing) toward the man in the water. The crew member then notified the bridge, which sent an immediate order (and signal throughout the ship — MOB [Man Over Board]) to release the “instant release rescue” boat and to stop the ship. 20 minutes later, the man was rescued. Ironically, the two ships were docked next to each other at Cozumel when we arrived.