Most Common Cruise Ship Injuries
If you were injured while taking a cruise, you may be entitled to financial compensation from the cruise line. Cruise lines are required to keep their ships safe and secure for their guests, and when they fail in this duty, they may be held liable for their negligence.
Maritime law requires that cruise lines adhere to certain rules concerning operations and equipment maintenance, and appropriate actions in international waters. Carrier accidents (accidents related to types of transportation that carry passengers from place to place) are, unfortunately, common and inexcusable.
Passengers could experience lifelong injuries because of cruise ship injuries, including injuries to the limbs, the spine, the brain, and even to one’s emotional wellbeing. In the event that you are injured on a cruise, it is critical to contact an attorney who handles such cases. Maritime law and international law are complex, so trying to handle your case on your own can be disastrous. At Louis A. Vucci, P.A., we have dedicated our entire practice to cruise ship law, so call us today at (786) 375-0344 to talk to an experienced attorney about your injuries.
Injuries Aboard Cruise Ships
Passengers who travel on cruise ships encounter many potential hazards. Some of them are as follows:
- Slips, Trips, and Falls — Whether falling while exiting a tender boat, slipping on a wet area, or tripping over an object negligently left in the way, there are many potential slip, trip, and fall dangers on ships. If a passenger falls aboard a ship, they could break their leg, cause serious injury to their spine, or even suffer a concussion or other brain injury. Cruise lines are responsible for making passageways maneuverable, keeping tripping hazards out of the way, and posting warning signs if there is water so passengers don’t slip.
- Physical and Sexual Assault— Since 2010, when Congress passed the Cruise Vessel Safety and Security Act, cruise lines are mandated to report criminal incidents that occur while passengers travel on their vessels. The U.S. Department of Transportation keeps records of these criminal incidents. Physical and sexual assault incidents do occur on cruise ships, and the cruise lines are responsible for protecting passengers from such assaults. These horrible crimes have been committed by other passengers and even by cruise ship employees, the people charged with keeping passengers safe. Cruise lines must do thorough background checks on their employees to ensure that they have no violent or criminal history. They must also provide enough security to prevent incidents from occurring in the first place and effectively deal with them when they do.
- Excursion Injuries — While sightseeing ashore or snorkeling in a fun, exotic destination is often a cruise highlight, injuries that occur during these excursions can prove deadly. Bus accidents, criminal acts, watercraft accidents, and others are all potential dangers. Cruise lines must ensure that third-party contractors and employees have been trained correctly and proper protocols are followed.
- Food-Related Illnesses — Close quarters and shared facilities can result in the norovirus and other diseases being easily transmitted aboard cruise ships. Food from the buffets can lead to illness. In addition to food poisoning because of tainted meat or unwashed produce, when one passenger is sick, they can pass along their illness to others via contamination, quickly infecting the entire ship.
- Onboard Activities Injuries — Cruise ships offer lots of onboard entertainment and activities. They have casinos, dance floors, shows, and lots of other things to do. But if the entertainment areas aren’t kept free of hazards or if the activities themselves are risky, then accidents and injuries can happen. Broken bones, traumatic brain injuries, or lacerations could result.
- Medical Malpractice — When an accident, illness, or injury occurs on a cruise ship, passengers don’t have access to hospitals or clinics like they ordinarily do. Cruise lines must not only have the proper medical personnel to handle the problem when it occurs, but they must also have proper plans in place if a passenger needs to be emergency evacuated.
- Swimming Pool and Drowning Incidents — A six-year-old boy died from drowning aboard a Carnival Cruise ship, and by no means was this an isolated incident. Cruise lines don’t always provide adequate lifeguard protection, have safe diving boards, or keep decks hazard-free. In addition, passengers have died or been seriously injured because they fell overboard on a ship.
- Onboard Fires — Though no one wants to think that fires can occur on their cruise vacation, unfortunately, they can and have. Burns, trampling, falls, and other serious problems could face passengers who experience a cruise ship fire.
- Employee Negligence — Cruise lines are required to make sure that their employees don’t pose a danger to passengers. They must properly maintain equipment and make good decisions when facing storms or other problems that could arise while at sea. Walkways should be kept clear, and objects should not fall. Ship personnel must adequately teach emergency procedures to passengers. Failure to take steps to keep passengers safe may constitute negligence.
These and other accidents can cause a variety of injuries, including:
- Head and brain injuries
- Cuts, lacerations, burns, and contusions
- Broken bones
- Sprains and strains
- Spinal injuries
- Physical and sexual assault injuries
- Psychological and emotional harm
Tragically, sometimes people are killed as a result of cruise ship accidents. If you lost a loved one after an accident on a cruise ship, Louis A. Vucci, P.A. can help you recover compensation for funeral expenses and loss of support, among other losses.
Call Our Firm
If you or someone you love has been injured on a cruise ship or while on a cruise ship excursion, call Louis A. Vucci, P.A. at (786) 375-0344 for your free case evaluation. The work we do for our clients has garnered multi-million-dollar verdicts and settlements over the years. Cruise ship law is extremely unique, and most lawyers are not prepared to handle these kinds of cases. At Louis A. Vucci, P.A., cruise ship law is all we do. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you with your passenger claim.