Hurricanes are very common in Florida and the Caribbean usually between September and October and many people are affected. If you are on a ship when a hurricane is on its way you are actually in the best place! They navigate away from the hurricanes path and ensure everyone is safe and out of harms out.
Many cruise lines do humanitarian work and lease or lend their ships to help the islanders and house the emergency teams. Carnival Cruise Line were a huge support during hurricane Katrina and based ships in New Orleans to house people. Royal Caribbean International and Norwegian Cruise Lines have been ferrying people to safety during Irma along with the Bahamas Celebration relocating to St Thomas for three months to assist in the restoration of the islands and Mickey Arison of the Carnival Corporation pledging millions to aid hurricane relief!
Most likely the cruise lines will offload the guests and cancel upcoming cruises during the hurricane giving full refunds and an onboard credit. They will then relocate with the crew to a safe area out at sea and for the crew on board it is happy days! You get to enjoy the ship and the excitement of escaping from a hurricane.
Hurricanes are no fun though. They leave a path of destruction and rip peoples lives and homes apart. If you are able to assist in any way during this time please do. If the guests remain on board the ship will be 100% operational and although some ports will be missed and sea days added they will appreciate the opportunity to still enjoy a quality vacation.
If you are a crew member who has family affected by a hurricane or any kind of disaster whilst you are on board do speak with the Human Resources Director and your shipboard manager who will be able to guide and support you.
Here are some articles on the efforts from Norwegian Cruise Holdings, Carnival Corporation and Royal Caribbean International and how the cruise lines come together during these times to help people:
Norwegian Cruise Holdings President and CEO Andy Stuart greets Irma evacuees. I personally have had the pleasure to work with and meet Andy several times and he is a wonderful role model and example of what good you can do when leading a large corporation.
People come together through all sorts of situations and if you are a crew member and its hurricane season you can be one of many who extends your hand to people in need, works in a team and has an amazing memory of a life changing event!