154 Evacuated Safely from Cruise Ship After it Strikes Ice

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) -- More than 150 passengers and crew who were rescued from a Canadian cruise ship are still stuck aboard the Norwegian vessel that rescued them from the troubled vessel in Antarctic waters today.

The rescue ship has now arrived in port, but high winds and waves are keeping the people from disembarking.

Earlier today, they had to be plucked from life boats and rafts after ice tore a fist-sized hole in their ship, the Explorer, and it began slowly taking on water. The captain ordered passengers to abandon ship about 90 minutes after the first distress call, as onboard pumps were unable to do enough.

The Chilean air force says the Norwegian liner is now at an air base on King George Island. The rescued passengers are expected to stay there overnight before being flown to a city in southern Chile tomorrow. But that all depends on the weather cooperating.

The captain of the Norwegian vessel says some of those rescued were wet, but they were otherwise unhurt.

Officials say the 91 passengers included 13 Americans.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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