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Three new Panamax ships will make inaugural voyages to Hawaii in 2001 and their arrival starting in March will cause more than a few ripples at Honolulu Harbor and neighbor island ports.
In fact, members of the Hawaii Pilots Association must travel to Florida and Denmark to practice on virtual-reality simulators that train pilots how to steer the large, rudderless ships.
The inbound vessels are Infinity, Radiance of the Seas and Carnival Spirit. They are either under construction or almost completed in European shipyards. The ships are about the same size as or larger than Cunard Line's Queen Elizabeth 2. But they'll carry more than twice as many people, up to 2,496 passengers and nearly 1,000 crew members.