The Carnival Sensation provided blankets, life jackets, food and water to the 22 adults and two children, according to the cruise line
Carnival Sensation Assists Small Craft in Distress
Carnival Sensation rescuing the 24 people from the small boat
| Credit: Carnival Cruise Line

Twenty-four people were rescued by a Carnival cruise ship on Saturday after a small boat began sinking off the coast of Florida, the cruise line announced.

In a press release on its website, Carnival confirmed that the 24 people, "which included individuals from various nationalities and two children," were successfully rescued by crews before getting picked up by a United States Coast Guard (USCG) cutter.

The scary incident unfolded just 37 miles away from the coast of Palm Beach as the Carnival Sensation was sailing international waters, according to the press release.

The cruise ship rushed to the small boat's aid after Carnival crew members noticed that it appeared to be "in distress" and had begun "taking on water."

Carnival Sensation Assists Small Craft in Distress
The small boat getting rescued by Carnival Sensation
| Credit: Carnival Cruise Line

"Upon seeing the boat in the water, Carnival Sensation maneuvered alongside the craft and provided blankets, life jackets, food and water to the 24 people on board," the press release stated, alongside photos of the rescue.

After handing out supplies, the group was brought onboard the Carnival Sensation, according to the cruise line.

There, medical teams evaluated them before requiring a mandatory quarantine away from crew members.

"All appropriate authorities, including the United States Coast Guard (USCG), were notified," the cruise line said, noting that the USCG cutter eventually arrived at the scene to retrieve all 24 people.

Carnival Sensation Assists Small Craft in Distress
People being rescued by the Carnival Sensation
| Credit: Carnival Cruise Line

Though the Carnival Sensation was sailing the waters, the cruise line said it is "currently in a pause in its operations with ships at minimum non-operational manning status with limited crew members and no guests on board."

Typically, the 855-foot-long ship sails with over 2,000 guests and can house about 920 crew members, according to its fact sheet on Carnival's website.

However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has prevented them from sailing at full capacity due to the No Sail Order, which was extended by the CDC earlier this month and banned cruise ships from U.S. ports until Oct. 31.

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The extension came just a few weeks after Carnival, which has been financially crippled due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, announced that four ships were canceling their voyages into the spring of 2021.

In that same announcement, the cruise line also revealed that they were planning to sell at least 18 ships, which amounts to 20 percent of the company's fleet.

As of Monday afternoon, there have been at least 8.1 million cases and 219,541 deaths attributed to coronavirus in the United States, according to the New York Times.

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