Man blown off pier by high winds as cruise ship breaks loose from dock

Man blown off pier by high winds as cruise ship breaks loose from dock



A 65-year-old security guard is missing after he was swept off a pier at the Port of Mobile, Alabama in high winds that also caused a cruise ship to break loose from its repair dock and slam into other vessels.

The Daily Mail reports that family members fear the worst for John 'Buster' Johnson, who was in the security guard hut at the BAE Shipyard in Mobile when it was blown into the Mobile River on Tuesday afternoon.

"My understanding is he is classified as missing," Disaster Relief Chaplain Tony Dickey told the Mobile Press-Register.

"The family understands under the circumstances that it is very probable that he is deceased. However, (Mr Johnson's wife) asks that the community pray for those looking for her husband to find him and bring him home."

The Coast Guard is searching for Mr Johnson, while another man who was in the shack, has been recovered from the water.

On its Twitter feed, the fire department said the Coast Guard, Mobile police and the sheriff department's flotilla are now in charge of a "recovery operation."

WPTV.com reports that the Carnival Triumph cruise ship was secured at a dock at the Alabama Cruise Terminal on Wednesday night, officials said.

Tugboats remain next to the ship as a precaution, Carnival said.

Carnival spokeswoman Joyce Oliva said all crew members and contractors on the ship have been accounted for.

According to CNN, wind gusts reached 66 mph on Wednesday at nearby Brookley Field, the National Weather Service in Mobile said, though Carnival stated that winds exceeded 70 mph.

Carnival Triumph has been at BAE Shipyard in the Port of Mobile since an engine fire in February left the cruise ship crippled and adrift in the Gulf of Mexico with more than 4,200 people on board.

It broke free from the shipyard on Wednesday but tugboats kept it from drifting farther down the river.

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