The Delta Queen has not been used for overnight passenger service since fall 2008, after Ambassadors failed to get an exemption from the federal Safety at Sea Act.
That 1966 law forced any boat that was predominantly wooden to stop operating as an overnight cruise vessel if it carried more than 49 passengers. Though the Delta Queen has a steel hull, she has a wooden superstructure and carries up to 174 passengers. Congress had granted her nine exemptions to the Safety at Sea Act since 1966.
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