Business is booming at a sea dock in western Turkey, where five hulking cruise ships are being dismantled for scrap metal sales after the COVID-19 pandemic all but destroyed the industry, the head of a ship recyclers’ group said on Friday.
Cruise ships were home to the some of the earliest clusters of COVID-19 as the pandemic spread globally early this year. In March, U.S. authorities issued a no-sail order for all cruise ships that remains in place. On Friday, dozens of workers stripped walls, windows, floors and railings from several vessels in the dock in Aliaga, a town 45 km north of Izmir on Turkey’s west coast. Three more ships are set to join those already being dismantled. 2,500 people worked at the yard in teams that take around six months to dismantle a full passenger ship. The vessels arrived from Britain, Italy and the United States.