Cruise Fire Left All Blackened, Melted

Jerry Levy says he thought he might have been dreaming when a loud fire alarm startled him out of bed very early on Thursday.

He quickly realized it as all too real.

Levy's room was at the center of the huge section of the ocean liner "Star Princess" that was scorched by a massive blaze as the ship was sailing in the Caribbean, from Grand Cayman to Jamaica.

Some 3,800 passengers and crew members were on board. One person died, and 11 were injured. At least 100 rooms were affected.

Investigators say a cigarette may have sparked the fast-moving flames.

On The Early Show Friday, Levy, of Orlando, Fla., told co-anchor Hannah Storm he "was sleeping in my cabin, which was in the middle of the boat, and at about 2:30, 3:00 A.M. An alarm went off. It was quite a loud alarm. It woke us up. And when you're that asleep, you're not sure if it's for real, or a drill, or you're dreaming. We quickly got up and went and looked out the window and realized it was for real.

"It looked like a combination of what you see on TV in a forest fire and a volcano. There was a lot of light ash and a lot of red flames, as well as what I would describe small-looking, almost like meteors, but globs of red molten stuff falling down on the deck. …apparently, from the deck above melting.

"And then, when I opened the door to my cabin to look out in the hallway, it was full of smoke, and on one side, people were on their hands and knees crawling.
  • Joel Roberts

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