Cruise ship aground in Sulu sea – sheer madness

Cruise ship FOREVER LUCKY ran aground on Jan 7 in Sulu sea 15 nautical miles northeast of Cagayancillo, Cagayancillo island, Palawan province, Philippines, while en route from Bataan to General Santos for repairs. 15 crew were evacuated. As of Jan 12, the ship was still aground, monitored for possible oil leak. Filipino salvage company was said to be contracted for salvage.
In July last year, MV Forever Lucky was stopped by port authorities in Orion, Bataan from leaving for Micronesia for allegedly smuggling 139 Filipinos to illegally work overseas.

Comment: It looks crazy and sounds crazy – Russian inner waters are still full of cruise ships of this type, but these ships are strictly and only inland waters ships, they are not seaworthy, though sometimes irresponsible owners and authorities allow them to take short sea coastal trips, in Black/Azov seas mostly. Fresh sea and wind will sink such ship in no time. It is absolutely irresponsible for Filipino authorities to allow such ship to navigate Filipino waters. Thankfully, the ship went into trouble without passengers on board.

Inland cruise ships Projects 302M/302K – 27 ships series built in East Germany during 1983-1991, length 130 meters, depth moulded 4.5 meters, dwt 3850, 3 engines, speed 25kilometers/hour, capacity 300 passengers, crew 100.
3 such ships built in early 90th were sold to China and transported in floating dock, all 3 were exploited as cruise ships, later as casions and hotels, probably one of them was sold to Philippines.

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My name is Mikhail Voytenko, I’m Russian, professional merchant marine navigator, by education and former experience. I own and run Maritime Bulletin website for more than 10 years. I've been involved in solving a number of piracy hijack cases, including the hijack of ro-ro FAINA, loaded with tanks. It was me who made public, and unravel, freighter ARCTIC SEA mystery. I've been also closely involved in a number of maritime disaster, one of them being MSC FLAMINIA major fire.