A MUM today told how she feared for her son’s life after being told he was stranded on a stricken ship.
Scarlett Clegg, from Cleveleys, said she had the “worst few minutes of her life” after hearing a fire had broken out on the Costa Allegra.
More than 600 passengers and 400 workers – including Ms Clegg’s 27-year-old singer son Anthony – were left stranded on the ship in the Indian Ocean after a generator blaze on Monday caused a total power failure.
Mr Clegg is a 27-year-old professional singer on the ship, which is from the same fleet as the Costa Concordia – the cruise ship which capsized off the Italian coast in January, killing 32 people.
Mrs Clegg told The Gazette: “My friend rang on Monday night and mentioned the Costa. I dropped the phone and saw on the TV the Costa Allegra was drifting in the Indian Ocean.
“It didn’t say whether it was sinking or whether anyone was dead.
“I was shaking like a leaf. It was the worst few minutes of my life. I was thinking, please don’t let him be dead.
“All I could think of was the images of the Concordia. It makes you think what those poor families went through.”
Ms Clegg, an aromatherapist, immediately rang Costa Cruises and spoke to a representative who assured her everyone on board was safe.
The vessel has no air-conditioning or cooking facilities. Two tugs will tow the vessel to the island of Mahe and it is expected to arrive tomorrow.
Costa Cruises say helicopters will ensure the continuous supply of food and “comfort items” including torches.
Mr Clegg, who moved to Blackpool when he was 20, studied performing arts at Blackpool and The Fylde College before graduating from a three-year degree in musical theatre at the University of Central Lancashire.
He sailed on the Allegra on a May Mediterranean cruise before the ship went in for its regular dry dock check in October.
He returned home to Blackpool to visit family and friends before setting sail on a cruise around Mauritius, the Seychelles and Madagascar in late November.
Ms Clegg added: “He’s always had a passion for singing. He’s been so happy on the ship.
“I went on the ship last year for 10 days – it was wonderful.
“People were coming up to me and saying he was a wonderful singer.
“There is no communication on board so I’ve not been able to speak to him yet. I just want to speak to him and tell him I love him. I want to hear him say he’s OK.”
Costa Cruises say it is liaising with passengers’ families via their emergency contact numbers.
Families in the UK can call the company’s emergency line on 0207 940 3300.