MOBILE, Ala. (AP) - The first buses carrying passengers from a disabled cruise ship are pulling away to take them to next stop on their odyssey.
The cruise ship terminal in Mobile, Ala., was raucous late Thursday as passengers streamed off the Triumph.
What was supposed to be a pampered voyage changed for the worse when an engine fire Sunday knocked out primary power to the ship.
After, the trip was marked by overflowing toilets, food shortages and foul odors.
Carnival said passengers have the option of a seven-hour bus ride to the Texas cities of Galveston or Houston or a two-hour trip to New Orleans. Some also can stay in Mobile.
Thornton also said that passengers would carry their own luggage once they arrive in Alabama and that only one elevator is functioning on the Triumph.
Petty Officer William Colclough says the ship will be "dead in the water" as the tugboat with the broken line is replaced with a useable vessel. He says the Carnival Triumph will be on its way once it is safely reconnected, but he did not given an estimate of how long the process would take.
The Triumph was being pulled by four tugs Thursday, and the Coast Guard said it had been moving about 5 mph. Before the towline broke, the ship and the 4,000-plus passengers were expected to arrive at the Mobile cruise terminal late Thursday night.
An engine-room fire Sunday left the ship powerless. More than 4,000 people are on board the Triumph, and passengers face long bus rides or other travel hassles to get home once they arrive in Alabama.
Passengers have described dismal, filthy conditions onboard, but the company has disputed the accounts and says employees are doing everything to ensure people are comfortable.
An engine-room fire Sunday left the ship powerless. More than 4,000 people are on board.