Tropical storms force Norwegian Bliss cruise ship to divert to San Diego

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) — Two tropical storms bearing down on the Eastern Pacific have forced a Norwegian Bliss cruise ship to abandon its original route and stop in San Diego.

The stopover for the cruise ship came just before 7 a.m. Wednesday. The ship was originally scheduled to sail from Los Angeles to several ports in Mexico but was forced to change that route due to tropical storms Willa and Vicente.

The new route has the cruise ship heading for San Francisco to San Diego to Ensenada, Mexico. The ship is scheduled to depart from San Diego at 6 p.m. Wednesday.

Norwegian Cruise Line said in a statement that guests were alerted to the modified itinerary as soon as possible.

"Due to Hurricane Willa and Tropical Storm Vincente in the Eastern Pacific, we modified Norwegian Bliss’ itinerary from Los Angeles," the cruise line said. "Our onboard team is working to ensure the best vacation experience possible given these weather-related changes."

Tropical storm Willa was downgraded from a Category 5 Hurricane Wednesday, but still made landfall with maximum sustained winds of 120 mph. Vicente was due to follow Willa moving inland over Mexico.

RELATED: Cruise industry booming as season begins in San Diego

The Norwegian Bliss is one of Norwegian Cruise Line's newest vessels in service. The ship can hold more than 4,000 guests, 1,700 crew members, and includes an aqua park, laser tag arena, casino, and a two-level race track — the first for a North American-based ship.

Each port of call has an approximate $600,000 impact in San Diego, according to port officials. The port expects 92 ships to dock in San Diego this year, bringing more than 295,000 passengers to town.

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