Grounding of passenger cruise ship Queen Elizabeth 2

Location: Stanswood Bay off the south coast of England.

Completed PE Summary: Queen Elizabeth 2

A short summary of the accident and action taken:

Category:   Merchant vessels
Vessel name:   Queen Elizabeth 2
Manager:   Carnival plc
Ship Owner:   Carnival plc trading as Cunard Line
Port of Registry:   Southampton
Flag:   UK
Classification Society:   Lloyd’s Register
Type:   Passenger
Built:   1969
Construction:   Steel
Length overall:   293.52m
Gross tonnage:   70,327
Date & Time:   0500 UTC, 11 November 2008
Location of incident:   Solent
Incident Type:   Grounding
Persons onboard:   1725 passengers; 1000 crew
Injuries/fatalities:   None
Damage/pollution:   None


At 0500 UTC on 11 November 2008, the Queen Elizabeth 2 ran aground in Stanswood Bay, in the Solent, during her final arrival to her home port of Southampton.

The bridge team’s actions were unsuccessful in correcting the vessel’s swing after her head payed off unusually quickly in a strong headwind and tide. This resulted in the vessel then being unable to line up the Thorn Channel entry and running onto the gently shelving, soft bottom, of Stanswood Bay. No injuries or damage occurred and the vessel was refloated, with tug assistance, soon afterwards.

Action taken

The Deputy Chief Inspector of Marine Accidents has written to Associated British Ports (Southampton) and Carnival UK acknowledging the actions being taken as a result of this accident.

Published: February 2009

Published 23 January 2015