Videos: Weather Affects Cruise Ship, Flooding

September 14, 2012

[Updated] A cruise ship broke its moorings and there is flooding island-wide following the passing of a very active thunderstorm cell over the Island from approximately 2-3pm today [Sept 14].

The Bermuda Weather Service issued a Thunderstorm Advisory and Gale Warning valid for this afternoon, and the inclement weather has affected the island with gale force winds and heavy rain islandwide, along with flooding in various locations.

This was due to very active thunderstorm cell that passed directly over the Island from approximately 2-3pm this afternoon, the BWS said.

The heavy winds caused the Norwegian Star cruise ship in Dockyard to partially break away from the dock and two Marine & Ports boats are presently on scene assisting with the situation. We will update with additional information as able.

Update 3.01pm: Flooding is being reported at various locations island-wide. This the scene right now at Island Embroidery store on Front Street where water can be seen gushing out of the door having flooded the interior of the store.

Update 3.06pm: Photos sent in showing the flooding outside Masters in Hamilton

Update 3.11pm: Bermuda Weather Service meteorologist Michelle T. Pitcher said: “As per our previous forecasts, we have had rain showers and a risk of thunder in the forecast for today as well as a thunderstorm advisory. The frontal boundary that is slowly making its way from the south to north of Bermuda developed a weak surface low center along it to our near south early this afternoon.

“The low unexpectedly intensified/deepened as it was passing by our south and that coupled with the expected outflow associated with thunderstorms increased our winds beyond our forecast. We accordingly issued a Gale Warning at approximately 2:30pm as we were seeing sustained winds of about 38 knots with gusts to 46 knots at our Commissioner’s Point AWOS station.

“There was extra text associated with the gale warning stating that the stronger winds were in association with heavier showers and thunderstorms. A very active thunderstorm cell passed directly over the Island from approximately 2-3pm. That passage coupled with the unexpected intensification of the low produced the gale force winds.

Update 3.15pm: Bakery Lane is also very flooded

Update 3.23pm: A Government spokesperson said: “Due to the current inclement weather, the 3:45pm ferry departing St. George’s has been suspended. The Department of Marine and Ports is liaising with the Department of Public Transportation to have additional busses assist with transport.”

Update 3.33pm: Additional photo of flooding on Dundonald Street

Update 3.52pm: Video of the flooding at the Island Embroidery store on Front Street

Update 3.54pm: The BAA car park is also completely flooded

Update 3.56pm: One local appears to be rather enjoying the flooding

Update 4.02pm: Additional photos showing the flooding on Front Street

Update 4.09pm: A Bermuda Maritime Operations Centre spokesperson said the Norwegian Star “made some contact” with the Explorer of the Seas during the passing off the gale force winds. There is some minimal damage to the vessel’s exterior.

Update 4.47pm: A full photo gallery of the flooding is here. A video of cars making their way through the flooding is below.

Update 4.53pm: A fire truck was at Gibbons Company on Reid Street pumping water out of their store. Video below.

Update 5.27pm: There are stacks of visitors lined up waiting to board the cruise ship in Dockyard

Update 6.01pm: The BWS said we received 2.19 inches of rain today.

Update 6.03pm: A NCL spokesperson said: “At approximately 1:30 pm ET today, a high wind squall caused Norwegian Star’s aft mooring lines to break while the ship was docked in Bermuda. There were no injuries, and after a short time of being at anchor, the ship re-docked alongside at the pier.

“Norwegian Star is on a seven-day cruise to Bermuda that departed New York on Sunday, September 9. At this time, the ship is expected to depart Bermuda as scheduled today.”

Update 6.43pm: Two planes had to abort their first attempt at landing this afternoon due to the weather, however both landed safely on their second attempt. Full details here.

Update 8.46pm: The Norwegian Star made contact with the the Explorer of the Seas when it broke its moorings, however there is minimal damage to the Star and none to the Heritage Wharf, Transport Minister Walter Roban said. Read his full statement here.

Update 8.59pm: The Gibbons Company store flooded today [see 4.53pm update] and spokesperson for the store said: “On Friday, 14th September, Gibbons Company closed its main store located at 21 Reid Street in Hamilton, at 4pm to ensure the safety of our customers and employees due to flooding.

“Crew are on-site at Gibbons Company and are diligently working through the night to ready the store for opening at 930am tomorrow, Saturday 15th September.

“Gibbons Company would like to thank its employees, the Bermuda Fire Service and additional emergency services who quickly responded to our needs. Their quick action will enable Gibbons Company to provide very little service disruption to our customers. The Gibbons Company Home Store, 18 Church Street, Hamilton, remained open until 6pm.”

- Have photos of the flooding? Please email them to & thanks to those who sent in pics!

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  1. What Next says:

    No surprise the dock was coming apart anyway!!!

  2. LOLA says:

    I have never seen Masters look like this!! Thank God we getting some tank water but this is amazing to see how much of a down pour it is.

    • What Next says:

      I have seen Masters like that Sooooo many times… It’s sad though.

  3. betty Rech says:

    Corporation is not doing their job that’s why we are having flooding drains are not cleaned out…

    • Moonbeam says:

      I understand the problem was not with the docks but with the ship itself which did not have enough ropes to tether it safely.

      • Timothy Hickey says:

        Ahhh moonbeam!!! I can guarantee that the ship had more than enough lines being used to secure it to the dock. Maritime law requires it by guideline. I can also guarantee you that the Captain of the vessel knew about this storm approaching before you did and would have taken extra precautions if needed for safety of ship and passengers including dropping lines and undocking along with temporarily setting to sea if he thought it was warranted.

        • ABM says:

          Are you sure, or is this just your opinion?

          • J Prescott says:

            His opinion, Moonbeam is correct. Mr Hickey, I will assume was not there for all the excitement.. Ship was way way under tied to the dock… It was a rope failure…

        • auslander says:

          Norwegian Star is disabled at the moment? Problems with the prop shaft/stuffing box I think.

        • Really fool says:

          Ahhh .. Nope your wrong, the ship had two bowlines only, engines were not running… Captain failure..

    • Concerned says:

      Doesn’t the the creek run by on the Corporation of Hamilton’s property just across from Master’s on the Eastern side – that adds to the problem as well. Wouldn’t a sump pump or something like that help with the flooding in that area as well as the other places?

    • Um Um Like says:

      Perhaps we should consult our newly appointed spiritual advisor.

    • Pure Madness!!!! says:

      Get facts before you start talking smack. It had nothing to do with the dock, as a matter of fact absolutely no damage was done to the dock. FACT: the high gusts of wind caused the ships lines to break, yes break, like as in snap. So find something else to gossip about oh and before you start talking about that, get the damn facts…. A$$hole.

      • Well says:

        High winds and gusts also tore a bollard off Ordinance Island not too long ago with the Norwegian Majesty(or Crown). Not entirely impossible that’s what happened here.

  4. Chart says:

    Yes I! BWS issues a forecast at 2:30 for a storm that started at 2!

  5. Soooo says:

    Bernews… Was it the moorning lines that broke, or the dock itself?

    • Bernews says:

      We think it was the moorings but that’s a big ‘think’, we are waiting on official word…

      • J Prescott says:

        The ships lines failed, only had two bowlines, they popped and ship peeled away popping lines as it went out, motors were fired up after the collision took place(stern to stern)… Minimal damage on royal carribean ship, but a significant dent to the stern of Norwegian ship.. Captain dropped anchors and rode the squall out about 200yrds off the dock.. Marine and ports were very quick to scramble tugs and line boat.. Hats off to them

  6. John Boy says:

    Haha! I noticed that too!!

  7. Mayan says:

    The cruise ship pulling away from the dock could have been a very serious situation if someone had been on the gangplank when it happened. Thank goodness no-one was hurt.

  8. Dawn de Toilet says:

    I have never seen water like this at has to be clogged drains!!! Just heard about the cruiseship..what a mess! With the cruiseship yesterday ferrying their passengers in with their own life boats because the tender was busy with the other two ships at Dockyard, and now the ship breaking away Tourism is not looking good at all. I’m on Front street and I dont know of any store with the water pouring in the front door…can we have a location on this store? Oh wait a moment maybe its coopers on the harbourside?

    • Soooo says:

      Looks like the old Astwood Cycles opposite the container docks

      • could be says:

        if it is where astwood cycles used to be, the backyard of that shop space has a hill leading from the back gate onto reid street down pretty much to the back door..

    • Concerned says:

      I think it is now The Embroidery store

    • TWINKLES says:


    • TWINKLES says:


  9. Cheryl says:

    When the tides r high so r the canals. No where for water to go. It’s not always corporations fault.

  10. Family Man says:

    Look out for the coming ads for car sales. Low mileage, slightly damp, lots of air freshener to hide those musty smells.

  11. owner4comment says:

    The start of the 40dayz and 40nightz has begun!!

  12. SmallFish says:

    No its the old wheels cycle next to docksiders.

  13. Hmm... On a Corruption Note says:

    Let me just add generic anti-corruption rhetoric:

    Does anyone have those engineering drawings…? And how much did Bermudian’s pay for those docks? Thanks for all the great things you do, government – if the dock was the problem, and their insurance looks into it… no more cruise ship.

    Glad there was no injuries.

  14. Amazed says:

    I believe that the flooding is made worst by the back up from Mills creek which is private property not corporation. The owners keep saying they cannot afford to fix the problem so we continually have to deal with it.

  15. Akspert? says:

    Didn’t the government pay an absurd amount of money to hire a “canal expert”?

    • Terry says:

      Canal expert…….bwahaaaaaaa
      Screwed again.
      Simple put, the docks and bollards failed.

      Cue Ewart Brown and his Gee freiends…….
      Follow the money.

  16. ABM says:

    Canal flooding as a result of the Pembroke dump being created. Many years ago, one was able to swim in the Pembroke Marsh and its canals all the way through to the Creek. It was all fresh salt water that flowed in and out of that area. Also, Bakery lane and the sorts use to be all marsh land till prominant home owners decided to get the creek drenged out adn all that sand and soil was used to fill up the Bakery Lane area to what it is today.

  17. TWINKLES says:

    THIS IS WHY WE HAD THESE FLOODS : A frontal boundary over Bermuda continues periods of rain showers, some heavy, with a risk of thunder into this evening. Expect a few showers through late Saturday as the frontal boundary lingers. Cooler temperatures arrives with northerly winds on Sunday afternoon. TS Nadine to our south-southeast is still not a threat at this time. This from the Bermuda Weather Service….

  18. Ottojr says:

    Whew!!!! This is incredible. That rain came down so much I was wrecking my brain to remember where I had parked the ARK. Well we all know about Bakery Lane..You through a bucket of water out and that Lane floods. Geesh man.

  19. Ottojr says:

    Through = Throw…I can spell. :)

  20. Terry says:

    It’s the PLP’s fault.
    They should have issued drills to release the water.
    And..if they had widdened Tahn Kut………the water would have went to Tuckers Town.

  21. Bermudians jus Talk says:

    Hahahahaha life is funny n ppl r Too!!!The heavens opened up and it becomes political,SMFH! !!i hav a idea how bout we all wait till we KNO THE FACTS with the criuse boat b4 we ASSume,Dumb ass ppl

  22. J Prescott says:

    Update?? Someone needs to explain to the NCL rep that the bow is the pointed end and the stern(aft) is the square end… The bow lines went first

  23. Reality Check says:

    Betty Rech – “Corporation is not doing their job that’s why we are having flooding. Drains are not cleaned out”

    Concerned – “Doesn’t the creek run by on the Corporation of Hamilton’s property just across from Master’s on the Eastern side – that adds to the problem as well. Wouldn’t a sump pump or something like that help with the flooding in that area as well as the other places?”

    Dawn de Toilet – I have never seen water like this at Masters. It has to be clogged drains!!!

    These comments are typical whenever there is flooding outside Masters, so how about a few facts:-

    • Masters Ltd is situated in the lowest area in Hamilton, barely a couple of feet above sea level (just check the little creek running between Masters Ltd and the COH Yard)
    • Water travelling along the Pembroke Canal is collected from the whole of the Pembroke Basin which is a huge rain catchment area i.e. around all the old Pembroke Dump, behind TCD, the whole of Bernard Park etc and it has to flow somewhere so it follows the canal running behind Masters, under the Bulls Head Car Park, under Woodlands Road where the canal continues along by BAA Field, again collecting water from that whole area as it travels towards Mills Creek.
    • Pembroke Canal is just that – a narrow shallow canal, not a fast flowing river, and it simply cannot handle the hundreds and hundreds of thousands of gallons of water it received this afternoon without having extensive flooding in the whole area because the water cannot flow fast enough when it’s already almost at sea level, even if the canal is in perfect condition.
    • Placing a sump pump near to Masters would be a complete waste of time because it would need a whole series of giant pumps to handle the huge amount of water that fell this afternoon. Even if many millions of dollars was spent on these pumps, just where would they pump the water to?
    • The area around Masters Ltd was subject to flooding long before Masters put up their building, will always be subject to flash flooding whenever we have major downpours, and the situation will even be exacerbated when heavy downpours occur close to high tide.
    • Blaming the COH for this type of flooding problem is like blaming the City of Venice for allowing their sinking city to be flooded in very high tides, or blaming the New Orleans authorities for allowing hurricanes to threaten their city.

    Can Betty Rech or Dawn de Toilet please explain to us just which drains were clogged or not cleaned out by the COH, and how these drains would have handled the enormous deluge that we received islandwide this afternoon?

    We love to blame someone, anyone, for our problems but the truth is that when you build on land very close to sea level you can occasionally expect what we received this afternoon – one heckova lot of rain and flooding throughout the Pembroke basin and elsewhere. It’s a fact of life.

  24. Grizz says:

    @Reality Check – BANG! Well said. I was going to say the same thing. People want to blame everyone and everything for something that no one can control….”Mother Nature”. She is the only one to blame and sometimes there isn’t anything that we can do as human beings to prepare for her wrath!!!

  25. Oyeah says:

    Gotta love our peeps when they gonna realize that they are driving cars not freakin sailing boats,don’t drive through deep water folks dah!