Neighbors watch cruise line evacuate after being stuck in Lake Barkley

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LAKE BARKLEY, Ky. (WKRN) — The American Jazz has been stuck on Lake Barkley for two days.

And while it has been stressful for those involved, neighbors have enjoyed having entertainment from their backyards.

“It’s been exciting, exciting for us. I know it was bad news for them,” Neighbor Brad Tyler said. “I’ve got nothing done around the house we’ve sat out here and had a little picnic watching the crews work on it.”

Neighbors say they saw the cruise liner come through the channel and turn right into a sandbar rather than following the path.

“We see people come down through here all the time. We go ‘oh, look there’s a newbie, he’s out of the channel. He’s going to get hung up,'” Tyler said. “He got out of the channel. We knew right away.”

Despite multiple tugboats trying to push the ship out of the sandbar, Tyler said it was unsuccessful.

“But as I could see, they didn’t have a place to pull on the back of the big ship so the first night they spent all night, the tug just held pressure on it and the big boat ran his motors trying to back out which he couldn’t do,” Tyler said.

So, the plan changed on Friday evening to evacuate the 120 passengers on board, 10 at a time people boarded pontoon boats to head to the mainland.

Once they were back on solid ground, passengers got on buses headed to Nashville for the night. The ship, with a few dozen crew members, remains in Lake Barkley.

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