Fog causes even more travel troubles

Cruise ship delayed 5 hours

TAMPA, Fla. - At the Port of Tampa, the Carnival Paradise is leaving about three hours late Monday evening. But some passengers who got off the ship earlier in the day are still stuck here because of a perfect storm of fog here and snow in other parts of the country.

"I gotta call my boss and say I'm not coming," said Tosha Clark.

Clark won't be back in upstate New York anytime soon.

When the Paradise returned from a five day voyage to Cozumel, more than five hours late, any chance of making her flight home to the snowy Northeast was over.

"We've been on the phone and the computer trying to get out of here," said Clark.

The Paradise was supposed to reach the Port at about 7 am. But officials say fog made it to dangerous for the ship to dock.

Allen Thompson with the Tampa Bay Pilots Association said, "We brought a vessel in about 2-2:30 and everything seemed to be O.K., then all of a sudden it just blanketed out. Some of those things are spontaneous and totally outside of the pilot or mariner control."

Julie Miglioranzi calls herself a professional cruiser, with more than 20 trips to sea.

She isn't rushing to the airport for her flight home to Cincinnati because she follows a simple rule.

"Stay the day before you cruise. Stay the day after you cruise, then there's not a hurry. But nobody seemed to be very frustrated, they were all in good spirits still drinking as usual," she said.

She says fog in Tampa bay this time of year is expected. "Real cruisers know. We know," she said.

As for Tosha, the next flight to New York she could get on is Friday, so she'll likely drive to South Carolina with her family and figure out a way home from there.

Despite the fog delay, she still had a great trip. "It was wonderful. I'd do it again. But I wouldn't do that part again, I think I'll fly off there or something. Jump in the water and swim to shore."

Carnival gave meal credits to passengers because of the delays.
 

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