National News

Feb 14, 2013 2:31 PM by NBC News

Passengers stranded on disabled cruise ship still hours away from port

There are more problems for the 4,000 passengers and crew members on the crippled Carnival Triumph as the crippled cruise ship slowly makes its way towards port.

The trip to Mobile, Alabama is going to take longer than first expected.

Families are starting to gather outside the cruise terminal in Mobile.

Nellie Betts drove in from Mississippi.

She talked to her daughter right after the engine room fire Sunday crippled the cruise liner, but hasn't heard from her since.

"It's been horrible, not being able to talk to her, not knowing what's going on. I have just been sick about it," Betts says. "This has been horrible, this has been horrible".

"It reminds me of hurricane evacuations when we have no power, like Katrina in the dome except it's afloat," passenger Jamie Baker said in a call from on board the Triumph.

Passengers have described horrific conditions: Little food, no air conditioning, raw sewage and violent swaying on rough waters.

"My friends and I slept with our life vests in our bed and truly thought the boat was going to tip over because it slants at a 45 degree angle one day and then the next day it's to the other side," Baker said. "Pipes are busting, the sewer is backing up. Water is in the cabins and it's just a nightmare."

Initially Triumph was scheduled to be in port around 4 o'clock this afternoon. Carnival officials now say the ship will not dock until much later in the evening.

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