Explora Journeys has earmarked August 1 as the new date for the postponed maiden voyage of its new EXPLORA I ship.
Explora – the luxury cruise arm of MSC Cruises – last week postponed Explora I’s launch, which was due to take place (along with the official naming ceremony) from July 6-8, with the maiden voyage originally set for July 17.
EXPLORA I’s launch had already been postponed after post-Covid supply chain issues. The latest hold-up is, reportedly, due to additional safety measures on fire-resistant panels needed.
Explora and Italian shipbuilder Fincantieri said the further necessary enhancements are forecast to take a few weeks.
In a statement, Explora Journeys said: “Explora Journeys was only recently made aware before the delivery of EXPLORA I of an issue that some materials used on the ship did not meet the required safety certifications. As the safety of our guests and crew is of the utmost priority we took the immediate and responsible decision not to take delivery, even though this meant that we had to cancel the ship`s first sailing to ensure she can be delivered with the highest safety standards and will have all appropriate safety certifications in place.
“We are working tirelessly with the shipbuilder Fincantieri to deal immediately and appropriately to replace the affected materials to ensure the safety and compliance of the ship. The work is currently underway, and the shipbuilder is discussing with the relevant classification societies to obtain the ship’s safety certificate as soon as possible, so that she will be ready for delivery on 24 July and her first sailing on 1 August from Copenhagen.
“We understand the disappointment the delay has caused our guests but their safety and that of our crew are of our first priority and we appreciate their understanding as we manage effectively this unexpected situation.”