Crippled Cruise Liner Expected to Dock Thursday

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Another crippled Costa cruise ship is being towed back to shore after a fire knocked out its generator room on Monday.

The Costa Allegra is expected to reach the main Sehchelles island of Mahe by Thursday.

The cruise ship is owned by the same Italian company that owns Costa Concordia, the ship that capsized last month near the Tuscan coast, killing at least 25 people.

The Costa Allegra is "being pushed by the current. It is stable and upright," Giorgio Moretti, the director of nautical operations for Costa Crociere SpA, told reporters in a conference call late Monday from company headquarters in Genoa, Italy.

"It's a big ship and to tow it, to move it across the waters, is a heavy task," said Seychelles presidential spokeswoman Srdjana Janosevic.

She added that all was calm on board the vessel and no one was hurt.

However, more than 1,000 passengers and crew on board are facing tough conditions as there's no electricity for lights or air conditioning.

Food, cell phones and flashlights have had to be flown in by helicopter.

"The speed of the ship, despite the hot and humid climate, creates a slight breeze that helps make the situation more comfortable," a company statement said. It said fresh bread would be brought in Wednesday since cooking was impossible, but added there was "no lack of food and other comfort items."

Somali pirates frequent the area where the Allegra was being towed. But a nine-member Italian military unit is aboard the ship, ready to repel any invaders.

"If pirates attack, the armed guards on board will respond. But as far as I am aware, no pirates have been sighted in the area," Janosevic said.

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