Cruise ship cancels two trips for repairs

Posted: Friday, June 08, 2001

ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Operators of the cruise ship Infinity canceled two June cruises to Alaska ports after metal shards showed up in the ship's oil filter.

The seven-day cruises were set to sail out of Vancouver on Friday and on June 15, visiting Juneau, Skagway and Ketchikan. More than 2,000 people were booked on each cruise, said a spokesman for Celebrity Cruises, part of the Miami-based Royal Caribbean cruise line.

Representatives of the coastal communities said that while the cancelations are only a small part of the summer's business, the loss in tourism revenues will be noticed.

''We'll probably lose several hundred thousand dollars in over-the-counter sales and other services,'' said Buckwheat Donahue, executive director of the Skagway Convention & Visitors Bureau.

The 965-foot Infinity should be back in service by June 22, according to Celebrity.

John Mazor, president of the Juneau Convention and Visitors Bureau, said the two days the ship does not spend in Juneau will mean a loss of revenue of more than half a million dollars. He said the city and borough of Juneau will lose more than $18,000 in sales tax revenue on that half-million.

Celebrity has 40 additional cruises to Alaska scheduled for the rest of the summer. Mazor said cruise companies will send 41 large and small ships to Juneau this summer making 539 stops.

''Overall it's not a significant loss when we expect 652,486 people to come through,'' said Patti Mackey, executive director of the Ketchikan Visitors Bureau.

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