Queen Mary in dire need of repairs due to age, report finds

LONG BEACH, Calif. (KABC) -- The Queen Mary is a majestic ship with an incredible history, but now the vessel that survived a World War is in dire need of repair.

"We've got rust everywhere. We've got expansion joint problems. She's an old gal. There's just stuff falling apart everywhere," said Mary Rohrer, who is part of an independent group called Restore the Queen.

A new report found that there is extensive corrosion and infrastructure issues with the ship. The damage is serious enough that within the next 10 years, some internal areas could collapse, according to the report.

"I think it was painted over 25 years ago. They're constantly doing stuff. They have a basic maintenance plan for the ship, but you know most of what's been done is cosmetic," Rohrer said.

The report estimates it could cost somewhere between $235 million to $289 million to fix all the issues.

The company that now operates the lease, Urban Commons, said Monday that the team is "already in full swing making critical structural renovations and repairs to ensure the Queen Mary is well equipped for the next 80 years."

"The city and Urban Commons have put $23 million into the immediate repair of the most urgent issues of the boat," said John Keisler with the city of Long Beach.

To pay for all the expenses, the city said part of the long-term plan is to develop the area around the ship with shops and restaurants.

Keisler said the boat cannot support itself so that is why about 40 acres of the area around the ship will be renovated to generate revenue to continue preserving it.

Urban Commons said it is in the middle of a major renovation and will start work on the outside of the ship later this year.
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