Queen Mary ship closed to tourists to get ‘critical repairs’
LONG BEACH, Calif. (AP) — The historic ocean liner Queen Mary, which has been a Southern California tourist attraction and hotel for decades, is being prepared for “critical repairs,” according to officials in the city of Long Beach, which owns the ship.
The ship will remain closed, except for film location work, until the $5 million worth of repairs are completed, a city statement said Thursday.
“One of the most critical repairs identified in the engineering reports was the removal of deteriorated lifeboats. The lifeboats exert stress on the side shell of the ship which has created severe cracks in the support system,” the statement said.
Two of the original lifeboats will be retained and 13 will be stored while the city gauges interest from museums and other organizations in preserving them.
Repair work will also include installation of new permanent bilge pumps and improvements to a water intrusion warning system, among other items.
The city, which regained control of the ship last year, said the needed repairs are a result of decades of deferred maintenance by the ship’s previous operators.
The city has already done electrical work to re-illuminate one of the ship’s funnels, which are a distinctive nighttime focal point.
The Queen Mary was launched in 1934 and arrived in Long Beach harbor at the end of its final voyage in 1967.