NEW ORLEANS — Carnival has rerouted a cruise ship headed to New Orleans because of a tropical storm brewing in the Gulf of Mexico.
The Miami-based company says the more than 3,700-passenger Carnival Valor was sent to Mobile, Alabama, in the interest of safety. A company statement notes that coastal Louisiana is under a hurricane watch and water levels are high on the Mississippi River.
Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson tweeted a welcome to Valor passengers and a photo of the ship docked in Mobile on Thursday.
Carnival says arriving passengers will be taken from Mobile to New Orleans on complimentary buses.
The ship was supposed to depart Thursday from New Orleans on its next four-day cruise to Cozumel, Mexico. Instead, passengers will be taken to Mobile by bus from New Orleans.
Forecasters say Tropical Storm Barry could become a hurricane as it threatens Louisiana’s coast.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center says the storm’s maximum sustained winds Thursday morning are near 40 mph (64 kph) with additional strengthening expected during the next day or two.
A tropical storm warning is now in effect for the Louisiana coast from the mouth of the Pearl River to Morgan City.