Discounted cruise ship vacation packages now make it possible for singles and families alike to set sail for their favorite ports. Yet in the midst of planning your trip, you must carefully choose your cruise line and make sure you read the tiny print on any ticket you’re sold. It’s important to understand the limitations imposed on your recovery options should your vacation turn into an unexpected disaster.
Shipboard disasters have been all over the news lately. From stranded ships, to onboard viruses, passengers overboard, and countless slip and fall accidents, it should make a person wonder what their legal rights would be if they find themselves a victim of one of these types of incidents.
The following list notes some of the various accidents and incidents that have occurred on Florida cruise ships while out at sea:
Cruise Ship Accidents
- Slip-and-Fall Accidents. When cruise ship employees fail to properly maintain all of the deck areas, personal cabin facilities and hallways, excess water, soap, food and debris can collect – causing many passengers to suffer various fall injuries, especially broken arms and legs. Other passenger can suffer even more serious injuries;
- Negligent Preparation of Meals/Onboard Viruses. Poorly refrigerated meats and other food items can lead to cruise-wide problems for passengers – that can turn into prolonged illnesses. On a recent Royal Caribbean cruise out of Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale, 10% of the passengers came down with the novovirus during the cruise.
- Insufficient Security Staff and Shipboard Pool Personnel. Far too many passengers simply assume cruise ships always hire adequate security lifeguards to watch them while swimming onboard or to protect them while they make their way back to their cabins late at night. Unfortunately, assaults and thefts occur regularly on cruise ships.
- Poor Navigation and Ship Management Skills. The Costa Concordia is the most infamous recent incident of poor navigation. Thirty-two of the 4,200 passengers died in this tragic incident.
- Miscellaneous Security Failures and Lack of Adequate Precautions. Large cruise ships can carry over 5,000 and 3,000 cruise ship employees. You are essentially travelling on a small, floating city. Crime is sure to follow when there are that many people contained within a single ship. In fact, over a recent five year period, the FBI had close to 200 crimes reported as occurring on cruise ships.
- Passengers Overboard. In the last five years, 33 passengers have been reported as going overboard during cruises. Statistics indicate more than one-half of all passengers being reported overboard have occurred on a cruise ship owned by Carnival, Costa, Cunard, P&O, Princess and Holland America. Royal Caribbean cruise ships had the next highest total of passengers being reported overboard.
Whether you’re planning to book passage on a cruise ship operated by Carnival Cruise Lines Celebrity Cruise Lines, Norwegian Cruise Lines, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines or a smaller cruise company, you should be aware of the dangers of cruising amongst such a large group of passengers, and know your legal rights if something unfortunate occurs.
If you’ve suffered any type of Florida cruise ship injury or accident, please contact the Law Offices of Joseph M. Maus to learn more about your legal rights. Both Florida state and federal courts recognize the rights of cruise ship passengers to be fully compensated for any serious personal injuries suffered due to cruise ship company negligence. Call Toll Free today at: (855) 999-LAWS or (954) 784-6310.