The Carnival cruise ship that was drifting in the Gulf of Mexico finally reached Mobile, Alabama Thursday night, carrying thousands of frustrated passengers who were forced to endure deplorable, unsanitary conditions for days.
Reagan Meredith of San Antonio was on that cruise that left Galveston last Friday for what was supposed to be a bachelor party, but it turned into a nightmare Sunday when a fire in the engine room disabled the vessel.
He shared his account of the harrowing ordeal on the Jack Riccardi show on 550 KTSA Thursday morning. As the Carnival Triumph was being towed closer to shore, Meredith was able to use his cell phone again and was describing the conditions as he stood on the deck.
"It's smelly, it's wet and it's pretty bad overall," said Meredith. "The toilets are overflowing and they're flooding into the rooms and the carpet smells like mold."
He said he and many others moved out of their rooms and slept in the hallways by the elevators because of the stench.
"They told us to start using our shower as our restroom," he said.
Meredith and his friends spent most of their time on deck.
"We set up some tents on the deck yesterday, but they made us take those down because of the helictopers flying over us. They took our rope and they took our bedsheets and they haven't given those back," Meredith told Riccardi.
He says they were being fed cold cuts and vegetables and fruits and they've had drinking water. While expressing frustration and anger towards the Carnival executives, he thanked the crew for trying to be helpful during adverse conditions.
"We talked to a crew member who said that they'd only been given two pieces of bread and peanut butter to eat everyday."
Meredeth also told Riccardi he hadn't seen any bickering or fighting, but there were some injuries and illnesses on board.
"A lady fell down some stairs and broke her hip so she had to be taken off the ship. We also saw someone being taken down the stairs on a stretcher," said Meredith
The interview in its entirety is posted on the 550 KTSA Facebook page.