A Caye Caulker Water Taxi bound for Belize City ran into trouble this morning.
Despite numerous attempts, no one from the Caye Caulker Water Taxi Association
would speak to us on the record but here is what we understand happened: at
about 7:15 “The Carinosa” which left San Pedro at 6:15 was approaching
Belize City when it encountered mechanical problems. Unofficial information
is that there was an engine failure - specifically the “solenoid tripped”
– that’s the switch which starts and stops the engine. According
to that report, the captain chose to turn off the engine and docked at the tourism
village where passengers were able to walk off the boat.
The scare is that during all this – water started entering the boat-
in fact there are some reports that the boat bottomed out. That was probably
because when the engine was turned off – so were the boat’s bilge
pumps and so water began accumulating inside the boat and the engine wasn’t
on to pump it out. The passengers- the majority of them students – arrived
Other reports tell us there was a problem with the cooling system which overwhelmed
the bilge pump. When it entered the tourism village terminal at 7:33 am, it
was in visible distress with the back of the boat partially submerged. The tourism
village used their equipment to pump out a significant quantity of water and
by the time we got there at a few minutes to eight the vessel had been more
or less righted.
A report was filed with the Belize Port Authority and they are investigating.
Again we tried numerous times to get comment from the Caye Caulker Water Taxi
Association but they refused.