"We are currently finalizing travel arrangements for guests from Mobile. Carnival Triumph guests were given the option of boarding buses directly to Galveston or Houston, Texas, or to spend the night in a hotel in New Orleans, where they could rest before flying out on private charters the next day. Carnival will cover all travel-related and incidental expenses," the cruise line said.
Carnival said it has reserved and arranged approximately 100 motor coaches, more than 1,500 New Orleans hotel rooms, multiple charter flights from New Orleans to Houston on Friday and transportation from Houston to the Port of Galveston so that guests may retrieve their cars if they drove to the port.
The cruise ship left Galveston for a Caribbean tour last week and was scheduled to arrive back there Monday.
That day, McKerreghan's ex-husband, stranded at sea, phoned to say the sanitary situation had already begun to deteriorate on board the Triumph.
"He said that the conditions have gotten so bad that they're asking them to use the restroom in bags, and they were eating onion sandwiches," McKerreghan said.
The call was the last she has heard from them.
Much of the ship's electrical power went down in the fire, causing widespread malfunctions, including taking out sanitary systems.
Passengers have reported sewage sloshing around in hallways, flooded rooms and trouble getting enough to eat.
"It's disgusting. It's the worst thing ever," passenger Ann Barlow said.
"From what I understand, they're walking around in a lot of urine and fecal matter, and the sewers are backing up," McKerreghan said. Her doctor gave her antibiotics to give her daughter as soon as she gets on land. A checkup will follow as soon as possible.
Passenger Jet Hilton from Crawfordsville, Indiana, has relied on her sense of humor to get through the ordeal, her sister Jennifer Stanfield told CNN affiliate WTHR.
Four-thousand people on a stranded ship can't flush, Hilton jokingly messaged Stanfield, venting about the stench on board.
Hilton and 20 of her girlfriends booked the cruise to celebrate one of their birthdays.
She is a former cheerleader, Stanfield said, and is doing what she can to keep her group's spirits up.
The fire also cut power to air conditioning, and the ship is very hot, Stanfield said. Passengers are flocking to the deck for fresher, cooler air.
The crew has higher priorities to fulfill than cooling cabins with what electricity the ship does have.
"They have to make sure there's adequate power to keep the ship from sinking or burning further," said Dr. Richard Burke from the University of New York Maritime College.
The fire also knocked out the ship's stabilization system, causing it to list, Burke said.