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Fishing net sends Silver Explorer into drydock for repairs

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Silversea Cruises said its expedition ship Silver Explorer became entangled in a drifting fishing net, damaging the ship and forcing a drydock for repairs.

As a result, the July 1 departure has been canceled while repairs are underway.

"Lost fishing nets are one of the plagues in the ocean," said Mark Conroy, Silversea's managing director for the Americas. "They get fouled and are cut loose or a line or cable breaks and they go adrift, usually just below the surface."

Conroy said the line cutters on the Silver Explorer's propeller were not enough to handle the net, which tangled the propellers and damaged the reduction gear.

The current 17-day voyage from Otaru, Japan, to Seward, Alaska, will be cut short by five days so the ship can proceed to Vancouver for repairs.

Guests will be flown by charter from the Aleutian Islands to Anchorage, Conroy said. They will get a full refund and a future cruise credit, as will those on the canceled 11-day sailing that was to depart July 1.

Silversea anticipates the ship will be back in service after that.

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