A slops treatment tank exploded in Gibraltar on 31 May, close to where Royal Caribbean’s Independence of the Seas (2008/154,407gt) was docked. There were no fatalities, but 12 of the 4,153 passengers aboard, the majority of whom were from the UK, were treated for minor injuries. Two Spanish workers at the plant were not so lucky, with one receiving 70 per cent burns. The blast prompted the accelerated departure of the vessel.
Gibraltar was the first port of call on a 14-night Mediterranean cruise from Southampton, which included calls at Cannes, Barcelona, Palma, Alicante, Lisbon and Vigo. Although three subsequent cruise calls had to go to anchor, ships were allowed back alongside at the port on 10 June.