Coast Guard closes ports Jacksonville, Fernandina as Hurricane Dorian approaches

Carnival Cruise Line cancels Monday cruise from JaxPort, modifies others

File photo
File photo

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – In anticipation of gale-force winds spawned by Hurricane Dorian, the U.S. Coast Guard has ordered the ports of Jacksonville and Fernandina closed to all traffic.

Sustained winds between 39 and 54 mph are possible within 12 hours. Mariners are reminded there are no safe havens in these facilities, and ports are safest when the inventory of vessels is at a minimum. 

While port condition Zulu is in place, no vessels may enter or transit within these ports without permission of the Coast Guard Captain of the Port.

Carnival Liberty's Monday cruise was canceled. Guests will receive a full refund of their cruise fare and any pre-purchased items.

Carnival Elation will now operate as a two-day sailing departing Thursday and returning Saturday with port of call to be determined. Guests who sail will receive a pro-rated refund of their cruise fare and any pre-purchased beverage and WiFi packages. Guests who wish to cancel will receive a 100% future cruise credit.

Carnival Cruise Line was still evacuating plans for the Carnival Ecstasy, which was scheduled to sail from Jacksonville on Thursday. Passengers booked on that cruise should check with Carnival's website or get text alerts by texting CCL12 to CRUISE (278473).

Ships planning to stay in port must not only notify the Coast Guard captain of the port but also provide a written mooring plan.

All vessel movements are prohibited at this time, and all ship-to-shore operations must cease.

You can stay updated on the ports' statuses via the Coast Guard's website.

The Coast Guard's search and rescue capabilities degrade as storm conditions strengthen. This means help could be delayed and rescue units may not be available to respond during the storm. Pleasure craft are advised to seek safe harbor, beachgoers and surfers should refrain from any activities in the water until Hurricane Dorian has left the area and conditions are safe.

About the Authors: