Cruise Ship Disappearance Who Is Responsible?

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With the news of yet another passenger going missing from a cruise ship, only to be later declared lost at sea, the inevitable question arises: who is responsible for cruise ship disappearance?  Is it the passenger that is responsible to make sure that they keep themselves safe on cruise vacations?  Does the cruise line bare a responsibility to make sure the the ship is secure from inviting accidental over boards, especially as cruise lines begin to offer “all you can booze” cruise packages?

The latest person to go missing from a cruise ship, 42 year old Jason Rappe, was sailing aboard a Holland America cruise ship last week when he went missing.  Not much is known about what caused Rappe to apparently go overboard the ship, though there have been reports that he and his wife were involved in a social drinking setting before his disappearance.  So, as is the case with so many crimes and disappearances aboard cruise ships, alcohol may have been a factor.

Cruise lines encourage drinking.  Many have even introduced so-called “all you can booze” cruise packages recently, which more or less amounts to a prepaid all-you-can-drink package.  But, with so many people going over board (no pun in tended) from cruise ships, it would seem that the ships would make falling from the ship, or jumping, more difficult.  However, at least 197 over boards have been reported in the past 10 years.  Once a person goes over board from a cruise ship, their likelihood of being found alive is slim.

Cruise lines should do more.  There should be fewer places where passengers can fall, jump, or be pushed from the ship.  In sensitive areas, closed caption video recording and security guards should be mandatory.


Hickey Law Firm, P.A. – Miami Injury Attorneys handles cases of personal injury, cruise ship injury and sexual assault, and other personal injury cases.