Monthly Archives: November 2016

Proudly Representing Cruise Ship Cases in Miami, Nearby Areas of Florida and Nationwide

  • A cruise ship passenger was reportedly sexually assaulted by a fellow passenger earlier this month.
  • The victim was sailing on a 9-day itinerary to the South Pacific when the alleged incident occurred.
  • Law enforcement officers were waiting on the ship when it returned to port in Sydney, Australia.

According to the DailyMail.co.uk, a woman was recently sexually assaulted while vacationing aboard a cruise ship.

The assault was reportedly perpetrated against the woman by a fellow passenger as she sailed on the Royal Caribbean Explorer of the Seas cruise ship. The woman was sailing on a 9-day cruise to the South Pacific, and was traveling to Vanuatu when the alleged assault occurred.

The victim reported the alleged sexual assault to cruise ship staff, who then contacted authorities. Law enforcement was reportedly waiting for the ship when it arrived back at port at Sydney, Australia, and boarded the vessel in order to collect evidence and interview witnesses.

Investigators say that the alleged sexual assault occurred earlier this month, but did not wish to comment further as the investigation is ongoing. Officers with the Marine Area Command are heading up the investigation.

While it is not unheard-of for cruise passengers to suffer sexual assault at the hands of fellow passengers, the bulk of such incidences are actually perpetrated by cruise ship crew members. Thanks to new cruise crime reporting guidelines, it has come to light that there are dozens of reported sexual assaults aboard cruise ships every year. Under previous reporting guidelines only a handful of cruise ship sexual assaults were reported annually.

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  • Over 100 people recently fell sick aboard a Holland American cruise ship.
  • The CDC reports that the sickness is likely caused by norovirus.
  • The CDC scheduled to review the ship in further detail on November 18th.

According to the CDC a Holland America cruise ship suffered a mild outbreak of norovirus, leaving nearly 100 passengers and crew members ill.

The outbreak was reported for November 3 – November 18, 2016 sailing of the Holland America cruise ship Oosterda. The CDC reports at 86 of 1,843 passengers fell sick, as well as 18 of 796 crew members. Victims were reported to have been suffering from symptoms such as vomiting and diarrhea.

In order to correct the problem the CDC recommends the following actions:

  • Increasing cleaning and disinfection procedures according to their outbreak prevention and response plan,
  • Collecting stool specimens from passenger and crew gastrointestinal illness cases for testing,
  • Making twice daily reports of gastrointestinal illness cases to VSP,
  • Consulting with CDC on plans for their comprehensive sanitation procedures in Tampa, FL, on November 18, 2016.
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  • When a cruise ship tilts, or lists, it can send all manner of objects dangerously flying through the air.
  • A listing ship can also result in people, especially the elderly or infirmed, falling over and suffering injury.
  • A former passenger of Carnival Cruise Lines is suing the company for injuries she sustained in a listing ship.

When a cruise ship tilts, or lists, it can cause an extremely dangerous situation for both passengers and crew. In recent years shocking video of listing cruise ships have shown the world scenes of tables, silverware, and even passengers, hurtled through the air as the ship tilts.

Now, one woman has filed a lawsuit as a result of being injured on a ship that listed.

On November 4th Pamela Williams filed a lawsuit against Carnival Cruise Lines. In the complaint she claims to have suffered significant injury on March 2015 while sailing on a Carnival cruise ship.

Williams claims that the ship listed, resulting in her suffering a laceration to her forehead. In her suit Williams faults Carnival for not warning her that the ship was prone to listing.

Williams is suing Carnival for negligence and requests a jury trial. She is seeking damages, legal fees, and any other compensation the court may deem appropriate.

The suit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida Miami Division.

 

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  • Cruise companies have taken some modest steps to help prevent sexual assault and rape, but more must be done.
  • A recent example saw authorities aboard a Disney cruise ship seemingly purposefully protect an employee who was caught on video molesting a minor girl.
  • Instead of turning him in to authorities, the company chose to return him to his home country.

We have been blogging about cruise ship sexual assault and rape for years. The issue is an ongoing problem which has not been adequately addressed by cruise companies. In fact, despite making some modest changes, meant to help reduce cruise ship rape, many cruise companies have sent mixed signals as to their willingness to help bring an end to such crimes.

Perhaps one of the most frustrating examples of a cruise line not doing enough to help prevent cruise ship rape and sexual assault occurred in 2014 when a Disney Cruises worker was caught on surveillance video kissing and fondling a minor girl. The child immediately told her guardians about the incident, and they went to cruise ship officials.

At the time of the incident, and its reporting to cruise ship officials, the ship was in Florida territorial waters. If the cruise ship’s authorities had reported the crime to Florida law enforcement, as should have been done, Florida police would have taken the case. Instead, the cruise line waited until the ship had left Florida waters to report the situation to law enforcement.

The perpetrator of the incident was later taken back to his home country and released, after allegedly being fired. He was never arrested.

As can be seen in the example above, cruise lines still have a ways to go before they can be truly declared to have their passenger’s best interests as their foremost concern.

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  • A woman who was sexually assaulted by a cruise ship bartender filed suit over the summer.
  • She says that he likely drugged her, and later took her to an employee’s only area of the ship, where he held her against her will.
  • Though cruise ship sexual assaults have been underreported for years, a recent change to cruise crime reporting guidelines has resulted in an immediate jump in reported sexual assaults.

Over the summer a woman, who previously sailed on a Norwegian Cruise Lines ship, filed a lawsuit. She is one of dozens of women and children victimized by cruise ship crew members every year.

The woman, identified in court documents as Jane Doe, filed suit against Norwegian earlier this year, claiming that she had been sexually assaulted by a crew member on her ship. She claimed that a bartender on the ship had been serving her drinks when she suddenly became disoriented. She claims that he drugged the last drink that he gave her.

After the victim became disoriented she says that he bartender took her to an employee’s only area of the ship, and refused to allow her to leave. While screaming, and begging to be released she blacked out. When she awakened she found that she had been sexually assaulted.

Cruise ship sexual assault and rape are a prevalent problem. The majority of incidences are perpetrated by crew members, who still have considerable access to traveler’s state rooms despite some recent changes aimed at reducing access. As can be seen from the situation above, cruise ship passengers rely on crew members for nearly every aspect of their vacations.

Recent changes to the way cruise ship crimes in general, and sexual assaults in particular, are reported will likely help the public to increase awareness. In the first year the change resulted in the reports of cruise ship sexual assault jumping over five times.

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  • The Carnival Liberty cruise ship continues to suffer from mechanical issues, causing continuing disruption in the company’s itineraries.
  • The company has decided to transfer the ship from Galveston, TX and replace it with the Carnival Valor.
  • The Liberty will sail modified itineraries for the immediate future.

Continuing issues with the Carnival Liberty cruise ship have resulted in the company having to move the ship from Texas to Florida, and replace it with the Carnival Valor.

On the company’s social media Carnival addressed the situation, saying that the propulsion problem is affecting the ship’s maximum cruising speed, but that the issue does not affect any of the ship’s other systems. The ship is reportedly able to continue to operate at reduced capacity. The company says that it has its own engineers working on the problem, as well as experts from outside the company.

The ship is expected to sail modified itineraries out of Galveston, Texas for the remainder of the month. It will then go into dry dock for period, before being transferred to Florida.  

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  • A Tennessee woman is filing suit against Carnival Cruise Lines, alleging negligence.
  • The alleged victim claims that Carnival failed to properly maintain the pool area of its Carnival Dream cruise ship, resulting in her slipping and falling on an unknown substance and sustaining injury.
  • The plaintiff is seeking damages, legal fees, and other compensation deemed appropriate by the court.

A Tennessee woman filed a lawsuit against a cruise line late last month, alleging that she had been injured aboard a cruise ship due to the company’s negligence.

The victim, Tynearia Harrison, filed a complaint against carnival cruise lines on Oct. 28. The suit, which was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, alleges that Harrison suffered injury after slipping and falling on an unknown liquid while sailing on the Carnival Dream cruise ship.

Harrison is suing Carnival for negligence, claiming that the company did not properly maintain its ship in a safe condition. The suit says that the company failed to inspect, clean, and maintain the area in which Harrison was playing a game near the pool at the time of her fall.

According to court documents Harrison requests a jury trial and is seeking various damages, legal fees, interest, and any other compensation deemed appropriate by the court.

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  • A cruise ship passenger was killed in a serious auto collision on the island of Dominica.
  • The victim was a passenger on an excursion from the P&O cruise ship Azura.
  • 9 others were injured in the crash.

A serious auto crash on a Caribbean island resulted in the death of one cruise passenger, and left several others injured.

A bus carrying 12 passengers, including 10 travelers with the P&O cruise ship Azura, was involved in a serious crash on the island of Dominica today, leaving one dead and nine injured. Images of the devastating scene were posted online and showed the bus with serious damage to its front driver’s side. The names of those involved in the Collision were not immediately released.

On the company’s Facebook page the cruise line issued the following statement:

We'd like to advise you of some very sad news. A bus operated by a shore excursion provider was involved in a collision in Dominica on Wednesday lunchtime. The bus was carrying 12 passengers, including 10 guests from Azura. The cause of the accident is not yet known.

One passenger has sadly died of their injuries. Another 9 passengers were injured and treated at a local hospital, with the majority now discharged. The names of the guests involved in the incident have not been released. P&O Cruises representatives are on-site at the hospital to support the injured. Next of kin have been informed.

We have activated our Care team to help those affected by the accident.

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to everyone touched by this tragic event. Our employees and crew are working to do everything we can to extend support and assistance to those affected and their loved ones,e

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  • Carnival cancels another cruise due to propulsion issues affecting its cruise ship Liberty.
  • The company canceled a previous sailing just days ago due to the issue.
  • The company had to cut a cruise short earlier this year due to mechanical issues affecting the Liberty.

Carnival Cruise Lines has canceled another cruise due to mechanical problems affecting one of its cruise ships.

Several days ago the Carnival Liberty cruise ship began to suffer from mechanical issues, which caused the company to cancel a cruise to Mexico, which was supposed to set sail on October 31. The company says that the ship’s propulsion system has been compromised due to a faulty generator.

Carnival issued a statement saying that the company is working hard to resolve the situation. "Our technical team, along with outside technical experts, has been working round the clock to fix an issue with one of the ship's diesel generators, which is only affecting the vessel's maximum cruising speed," read the statement.

The company apologized for the cancellation, saying "We had hoped to have the issue fixed in time for your sailing tomorrow. Despite our team's best efforts, the work is taking longer than expected. Unfortunately it is now evident we have to cancel tomorrow's cruise."

Carnival says that it will refund passengers for the price of their voyages and any prepaid items or excursions. The company is also promising to give customers a credit equal to the amount of their refund towards a future cruise with the company.

This is not the first time this year and that the Carnival Liberty has suffered from mechanical issues. In May the company cut a trip short in order to repair the ship’s bow thruster.

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  • In mid-October, a former cruise ship passenger filed a lawsuit, alleging that he contracted Legionnaires' disease while on a cruise.
  • The passenger sued Royal Caribbean, claiming they failed to protect him from the disease, which had already infected other cruise passengers in the months prior.
  • The plaintiff claims to have suffered damage to his kidneys, lungs, and heart due to the disease.

A passenger who allegedly contracted a serious disease aboard a cruise ship late last year is now suing the cruise line.

According to the passenger, he boarded a Royal Caribbean cruise ship in Miami in November 2015. After setting sail the passenger was notified that authorities on the ship had identified Legionella on the ship, but it was too late for him to disembark in order to avoid the illness. The notification reportedly informed passengers that the company had identified the disease in the ship’s water system during previous voyages.

After the voyage, Royal Caribbean reportedly sent communication to passengers informing them that they may have been exposed to Legionnaires' disease, and that they should seek medical treatment should they develop any symptoms. After returning home the plaintiff began experiencing symptoms consistent with Legionnaires' disease, visited a medical facility, and was hospitalized.

The plaintiff’s suit alleges that he suffered heart, lung, and kidney damage as a result of the disease.

Legionnaires' disease is a serious illness which is actually a form of pneumonia. It is known that the organisms which cause the disease can sometimes be found in water systems. Though the majority of people who contract the bug will eventually recover, it is estimated that a significant number of victims, between 5%-30%, will die from the disease.

 

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