MIAMI -

A cruise ship came to the rescue of dozens of Cuban migrants on an overloaded boat that was taking on water in the Florida Straits.

The U.S. Coast Guard said the Carnival Ecstasy spotted the migrants' vessel Tuesday evening.

A Coast Guard news release said the small boat wasn't seaworthy and lacked life jackets and navigation equipment.

Ecstasy crew members pulled 41 migrants to safety. The migrants were then transferred to a Coast Guard cutter patrolling the area.

Coast Guard Capt. Todd Lutes said the migrants' voyage could have ended in tragedy if it wasn't for the Ecstasy.

The migrants likely will be returned to Cuba.

Cubans who make it to U.S. shores generally are allowed to stay under the so-called "wet-foot, dry-foot" policy. Cubans stopped at sea usually are returned home.