MIAMI -- Carnival Cruise Lines will shift its 110,000-ton ship, the Carnival Conquest from New Orleans to Gulfport, Miss., for six weeks beginning March 9, saying a low-hanging power line over the Mississippi River poses a potential safety issue for the ship.

Carnival previously threatened to pull the Conquest from New Orleans because the low-slung lines, coupled with rising river levels, make it difficult to navigate the 210-foot tall ship under the lines.

Carnival president Bob Dickinson said he was "extremely disappointed" that "reasonable parties have not been able to find a means to resolve this situation."

The power lines are owned by Entergy Corp., New Orleans' power company. In December, Entergy officials proposed burying the lines underground, a process that was expected to take more than 18 months to complete.

The Conquest's new home in Gulfport is about an hour and 15 minute drive from New Orleans; Carnival will provide complimentary shuttle service from New Orleans.


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