Fuel prices are the least of Carnival's worries

The days when people bragged about taking a cruise to the Caribbean are long gone. The afterglow from a week at sea with all-you-can-eat amenities topped off with a tan is gone as well. And the EPA has nothing to do with it ("Carnival has plans to ship out of port," June 28).

Anyone who has been half-aware of the news headlines over the last year has noticed a gigantic spike in cruise ship mishaps. We've watched as an Italian ship cruising off the Mediterranean coast literally re-enacted the story of the Titanic.

We've seen story after story of cruise ships needing to be towed back to shore after a mechanical malfunction. And perhaps worst of all, we've witnessed cruise ships, including Carnival's, reporting septic system issues at sea. I swear I can smell those unfortunate ships through my TV.

The real reason Carnival cut its Baltimore stop is because fewer people want to pay for a tropical tour that may include backed-up septic and dysfunctional air-conditioning systems.

If Carnival updates its fleet to make its ships more reliable and less polluting, Baltimore may end up back on the cruise company's itinerary.

Justin Cuffley, Halethorpe

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