Vacation gone wrong: Families stranded in Barbados after cruise ship issue

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Lyndhurst, N.J. – Passengers say their Norwegian Gem Eastern Caribbean cruise ship broke down and they’re stuck in a Barbados hotel while their life-saving medications dwindle.

“We all want to go home,” said Kara Kaminski. She’s with her 10-year-old son and a friend. “We’re really all worried. We’ve had no communication with the Norwegian Cruise Line. Everyone needs medication that’s here.”

Kaminski’s son has severe allergies and suffers from asthma. She said only one pump remains in his inhaler.

Family members at home are frantically trying to help. Brian McCabe of Ronkonkoma, N.Y. said his mother and sister are trapped in this vacation nightmare.

“Without medication it could get very, very bad,” said Brian McCabe.

Ellen McCabe, 75, has severely high blood pressure. Karen McCabe, 49, has multiple sclerosis.

Passengers estimate there are about a dozen or more stuck on the island who cannot fly for medical reasons and who need medication refills.

“People have been flown from Florida from the [Norwegian Cruise Line] staff,” said Kaminski. “They should have been able to have them fly with our medications.”

Their cruise ship departed New York on October 31 and was terminated in Barbados on Saturday, November 11, instead of returning to New York as scheduled. Norwegian arranged flights for guests to return home.

“The company is accommodating select guests who were unable to fly home due to medical conditions at nearby resorts in Barbados, with all meals included,” said a statement from a company spokesperson. “Norwegian has secured and provided complimentary common medications for those guests who required additional dosage prior to their return, and continues to work with local providers to make every efforts to source additional medications as necessary.”

​Norwegian told PIX11 late on Wednesday night that the ship will be repaired and ready to take guests back to New York on Thursday. If this plan sticks, the cruise ship would arrive at home on November 21.

Passengers say Norwegian offered them 25% off their next cruise, which they don’t plan on taking.

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