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Norwegian Star, Carnival Splendor Bypass Mazatlan After Shooting

Features & Advice | February 24, 2011

Norwegian Star, Carnival Splendor Bypass Mazatlan After Shooting

Norwegian Cruise Line cancelled the Norwegian Star’s calls to Mazatlan, Mexico, through April, after a Feb. 22 shooting in the tourist zone. Carnival Cruise Lines’ Carnival Splendor cancelled its Feb. 24 call.

Although details are sketchy, the Associated Press reported Feb. 22 that two men -- who were not tourists -- were shot to death in the parking lot of a hotel.

Also, a travel agent told TravelPulse.com he received an email from a client on the Norwegian Star who said other passengers in the vicinity reported hearing about 40 shots being fired.

The cancellations come almost a month after cruise lines stopped calling at Mazatlan because of crime in the port area. Cruise executives attended meetings with port and tourism officials, who assured them that security was being increased. The cruise lines returned until this week.

Mazatlan’s port director, Alfonso Gil Diaz, confirmed the incident occurred but noted that it was not in the port area. “Unfortunately … there [was] this kind of incident in our port, but it has not affected or damaged any of the cruise tourists. Our authorities are increasing the security measures,” he wrote in an email.

“The safety and security of our guests and crew is our number one priority,” NCL said in a statement. “Therefore, the company has been closely monitoring the situation in Mazatlan, Mexico. Because of recent incidents of violence in Mazatlan, we are cancelling all of Norwegian Star’s calls to Mazatlan for the remainder of the season through the April 30 sailing. Instead, the ship will make two back-to-back calls to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. We thank our guests for their understanding.”

Carnival also said it replaced the Mazatlan call with an additional day in Cabo San Lucas. “Carnival is currently gathering information on the incident that occurred [Feb. 22] in Mazatlan,” the line said in a statement. “Until we are able to obtain all of the facts and fully assess the situation, no decision has been made regarding future calls. The safety and security of our guests remains our top priority.” For more information, visit www.ncl.com or www.carnival.com.

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