Reports are coming in from Reuters about an incident that occurred this afternoon aboard the Carnival Sensation – and while it turned out to be a non-event, nobody’s laughing.

As the ship was preparing to turn around in Port Canaveral in preparation for another short run to the Bahamas, a passenger on one of the upper decks overheard another passenger state, “We are jihad.  Come to the top deck and watch the bomb.  The bomb is going to blow.”

It turns out the statements were made by a highly-intoxicated passenger, a 31-year old American named Ibrahim Khalil Zarou.

The guest who overheard the drunken ramblings of Zarou complicated matters by stating to onboard Carnival security personnel that there was, indeed, a bomb on board.  This caused the line to keep the ship about four miles out from Port Canaveral, delaying its disembarkation by roughly five hours.

CruiseCritic reports that the FBI confirmed there was no bomb on board, and the situation was a hoax.  Zarou was arrested and could face up to 15 years imprisonment for his fake bomb comments. 

The Carnival Sensation was expected to depart on-time this afternoon, though that situation looks highly unlikely.  Many disembarking passengers are sure to have missed flights home – Port Canaveral lies roughly an hour away from the nearest major airport, Orlando International.

What is truly unfortunate about this incident is the number of people it has impacted.  Because of the foolish actions of one individual – who stands to pay dearly for his mistake – over six thousand passengers were affected, including the crew of the Carnival Sensation as well as the people behind the scenes at Carnival, who are no doubt scrambling to keep her on schedule.

Today’s lesson: handle your liquor.


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