​Cruise Ship Rescues Rafters Trying To Leave Cuba Bound For U.S.

Author: Kara GilmourBy:
Staff Reporter
Aug. 10, 2014

The Disney Wonder cruise ship rescues several rafters while the U.S. Coast Guards is in the process of interviewing 21 people who were picked up from open waters.

On Thursday afternoon, eight people were picked up about 45 miles from Key West by the Disney Wonder.

Disney said the ship acted at the request of the Coast Guard to rescue the rafters. Once onboard, they all received medical attention, food and water. The Los Angeles based ship was in the middle of a five-night cruise.

The second rescue was made by the Carnival Conquest on Friday afternoon around the same area as the first. Carnival said its ship spotted the raft and coordinated with the Coast Guard to take them aboard and give them food, water and medical treatment.

“We are happy to have come to the aid of these individuals and to support the long-established tradition among the global maritime community of providing assistance to mariners in distress,” Carnival President and Chief Executive Gerry Cahill said in a statement.

This cruise ship was on the last leg of a seven-day trip, the cruise line reported.

There have been no reported injuries of deaths involved in either rescue.

It has not been reported whether the rafters will be sent back to where they originated. However, Coast Guard Petty Officer Mark Barney stated that undocumented, non-U.S. citizens heading toward American waters are usually repatriated to their home countries.

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