A Royal Caribbean Liberty of Seas cruise ship rescued 17 Cuban migrants after they were spotted in a small makeshift boat on Saturday.
The ship was heading to CocoCay in the Bahamas when its captain spotted the frail vessel that had been at sea for weeks. WPTV reports.
“The captain came over and said we have to stop,” cruise passenger Josh Levin told WPTV. “People just started running down the hall to go check it out and we kind of followed them. It was a surreal experience.”
The three-night cruise was scheduled to dock at CocoCay on Saturday but stayed at sea after encountering rough ocean conditions, Levine said.
Added his partner, Mark Jackson, “it’s a blessing we didn’t end up docking at CocoCay, because who knows if another cruise line or ship would have picked them up or seen them.”
“En route to the Bahamas, Liberty of the Seas encountered a small vessel that drifted and required assistance,” Royal Caribbean said in a statement obtained by The Post.
“The ship’s crew immediately launched a rescue operation, safely transporting 17 people,” the company continued. “The crew is actively providing medical care and cooperating with the United States Coast Guard.”