Engine Problems Halt Cruise

July 14, 2014

A cruise vacation involves trips to beautiful ports of call and days spent enjoying activities while at sea. A recent cruise ended with the loss of an engine and an unscheduled stay in Naples, Italy before an early termination of the cruise. The ship, which formerly operated as the Sovereign of the Seas under the Royal Caribbean cruise line, now operates as the Sovereign under Pullmantur Cruises. When the engine problems were not able to be repaired, the remainder of the cruise was cancelled.

While the cancellation of a cruise may not seem like a serious event, the fact that old ships are still pressed into service leads to dangerous conditions on board the ship. If you have been injured on a cruise, it is possible that your injury was the result of negligence on the part of the cruise line. The skilled South Florida cruise ship accident attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, P.A. have more than 120 years of collective experience getting compensation for those people who have been injured while on a cruise.

In the case of the re-christened Sovereign, it originally went into operation in 1988. This makes it one of the older cruise ships that still is carrying passengers. The ship currently is undergoing repairs at a shipyard in Marseilles, France with a plan for it to return to full service by the end of May. Although this ship received a new paint job, much of the structure and equipment on the ship are original, leading to joints that could fail and defects that could lead to serious accidents. Some of the most common accidents on a cruise ship are:

• Slip and fall and trip and fall accidents - these accidents happen on stairs that are not maintained properly, with railings that are not secured, as the result of broken tiles or damaged carpet, and on dangerous walkways. As a ship ages, more and more problems will develop;

• Accidents in and around swimming pools and recreational equipment - these may involve dangerous diving boards and deteriorating gym apparatuses;

• Shore excursion mishaps - many dangerous events happen while enjoying activities with companies that do business with cruise lines;

• Food poisoning - there are many issues on cruise ships that involve food that has not been stored or prepared in a safe manner. If the kitchen equipment ages along with the ship, it may not be up to the task of preserving perishables;

• Accidents on escalators or elevators - there are many moving parts that go into a fully functional people-mover, so as the mechanics age, they begin to deteriorate, leading to dangerous situations;

• Injuries that occur when objects fall are not uncommon on cruise ships - when ships begin to age, it is more likely for parts of the ship to break off and impact passengers and crewmembers.

Although some of these accidents do not relate to the age of the ship, many others are linked directly to the deterioration of the ship from the process of age. When cruise lines decide to keep older ships in service, they are risking the safety and even the lives of the passengers who believe they are booking passage on a trip of a lifetime.

Cruise Ship Accident Attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, P.A. Advocate for Victims

The cruise industry continues to be an extremely profitable business. One of the reasons that many of the cruise lines bring in exorbitant profits is that they do not spend more money than necessary to maintain the cruise ships. This may lead to a breakdown in the structure and fixtures of a cruise ship that contribute to dangerous accidents. The experienced Miami cruise ship accident attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, P.A. understand how to get compensation for victims under existing maritime laws. With more than 30 years representing victims of negligence, our firm has received an AV rating from Martindale Hubbell and was voted one of South Florida's top-rated law firms by the Miami Herald. In addition, we have been invited to join Primerus, which is a highly selective legal society. To discuss what happened to you, call us at (888) 499-9700 or (305) 595-2400 or visit our website.

Cruise Ship Accident Kills Two Dockworkers

June 25, 2014

At the beginning of April, two dockworkers were assisting the Royal Caribbean ship Independence of the Seas in releasing its moorings and departing from the Caribbean island of St. Kitts. According to passenger reports, the two workers were in a small boat and were working to remove the final mooring lines. Statements indicated that the Independence of the Seas moved out before the men were free of the ship, with tragic consequences.

There are many different cruise ship accidents every year, many of which result in little more than a slap on the wrist for the cruise line. However, the suffering of the victims and their families lasts indefinitely. The compassionate and knowledgeable Miami cruise ship accident attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, P.A. understand how to get justice for victims of the negligence that is widespread on cruise ships. Our attorneys have more than 120 years of collective experience fighting for the rights of those who have been injured during a cruise.

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Politicians Starting to Push for Transparency in the Cruise Industry

June 18, 2014

The cruise line industry brings in large amounts of revenue for the companies that operate the various ships. However, the corporate structure of cruise lines and the international registration of vessels make it very difficult to regulate the standards to which cruise ships must be held, especially with regard to safety on board the ship and the suitability of the crew for their jobs. Our Miami cruise ship injury lawyers believe this lack of oversight has led to many serious problems, including a high crime rate and many tragic accidents. It appears that the degree of risk to cruise passengers finally may have triggered a political response by the United States.

Many passengers are not aware of the dangers that they face when they book that trip to an exciting destination because safety reports and on board issues are not widely available. If you have been injured or a loved one was killed while on a cruise, the dedicated and knowledgeable South Florida cruise ship accident attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, P.A. can help you get the compensation that you deserve if negligence led to the harm that you suffered. With more than 120 years of collective experience, we know how to build a successful case. We have handled many many cruise injury cases. These cases have included everything from falls, pool incidents, children being injured while on-board, passengers hurt on excursions or injured by the cruise lines failure to warn of known dangerous areas as well as for other types of negligence.

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Lifeboat Accident Demonstrates Safety Problems on Cruise Ships

June 9, 2014

In February 2013, the Thomson Majesty was in the midst of a seven-day cruise arriving in Santa Cruz de La Palma when it conducted a safety drill involving the 1,498 passengers and 594 crewmembers on board the ship. At the end of the exercise, (which involved instruction regarding how to deal with general emergencies and lifeboat safety), a group of crewmembers entered three lifeboats in order to conduct further safety drills. When one of the lifeboats was being hoisted, the wire rope fall at the forward of the boat failed, leading to a series of events that culminated with the lifeboat falling more than 20 meters into the water with eight crew members onboard. Five crew members died. The safety report was recently released regarding this fatal accident.

Cruise ship accidents take many forms, including tragic events during safety drills. At Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, P.A., our dedicated Miami cruise ship accident attorneys have more than 120 years of collective experience in getting justice for accident victims, regardless of how they were injured. We are ready to help you as soon as you contact our firm.

The safety report that came out after this terrible incident indicated that the wire rope had failed as a result of corrosion and that the rope appeared void of the necessary lubricant to maintain its strength and effectiveness. The lack of proper maintenance apparently had led to the deterioration of the strands to the point where the strands of the wire rope separated and permitted contaminants and seawater to enter and compromise the structural integrity of the rope. In addition to these problems, the wire rope was not fitted in accordance with the specifications of the manufacturer and the proper lubrication was not utilized during the maintenance that was done. This all should have been detected had proper inspection techniques been used. Passengers take lifeboats and the feeling of security one gets from seeing them in place too much for granted.

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Too Big To Sail? A Look at the Safety of Massive Cruise Ships

May 27, 2014

Over the decades, cruise ships have increased tremendously in size, weight, and passenger capacity. In 1985, the biggest cruise ship was the 46,000 ton Carnival Holiday. In early 2000's, the largest ship, the Queen Mary 2, was three times as large. Today, two 225,000 ton ships rule the high seas. Cruise ships continue to get bigger and more popular, but some safety experts are expressing concerns over this continual expansion of ship size.

Our Miami cruise ship accident lawyers find that cruise ships operate with little oversight or enforcement and, according to James Hall, a safety management consultant and former chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board, (NTSB) the industry has been very fortunate up until now.

Recent events have highlighted the potential perils of mammoth cruise ships. Thirty two people were killed when the Costa Concordia, owned by the Carnival Corporation, capsized off the coast of Italy. The accident revealed several flaws in emergency procedures and lapses in safety. More recently, a fire aboard the Carnival Triumph, left passengers stranded without power for four days until the ship was finally towed to shore. Yet another blaze on Royal Caribbean's Grandeur of the Seas forced the ship to dock in the Bahamas. The stern was left blackened by smoke.

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What to Do If You Have Been Injured or Taken Ill on a Cruise Ship

May 19, 2014

Millions of people set off on cruise ship excursions each year seeking fun and relaxation. No one expects to be harmed while enjoying a cruise ship vacation, but sadly thousands of individuals are injured or killed in cruise ship accidents. Accidents often result from cruise line negligence. Injuries commonly arise from slip/trip and falls, unsafe shore excursions, the ship's failure to inspect and maintain their vessel, and inadequate security. Illnesses also abound, frequently striking a large number of cruise passengers due to the ship's failure to take adequate sanitation measures.

Being injured or taking ill on a cruise ship can be frightening. You are often out at sea, isolated from hospitals, doctors, and mainland comforts. The following is a list of the steps our Miami cruise ship accident lawyers think you should take if you have been injured or contracted an illness on a cruise ship. Adherence to these protocols will help protect your chance at a later recovery and ensure proper medical treatment.

1. Seek immediate medical assistance--the first thing you must do is seek help right away for your injury or illness. Go to the ship's doctor or seek other first aid treatment so that your injury can be evaluated and proper medical care administered. Make sure that before you leave the ship you have a copy of your entire medical records from the ship, including x-rays, medications etc.

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The Dark Side of Cruises: Assaults on Cruise Lines

May 12, 2014

On Valentine's Day, February 14, 2014, a cruise ship passenger aboard Holland America's MS Nieuw was savagely strangled, beat, and sexually assaulted by a cruise ship worker. The 31 year old victim was cruising on a weeklong trip out of Fort Lauderdale. The incident began when the worker, 28 year old Ketut Pujayasa, attempted to deliver breakfast to the victim and she allegedly stated, "[w]ait a minute, son of a bitch."

Pujayasa stewed angrily over the comment for a few hours then planned his revenge. While off-duty, he used a master key to get into the woman's stateroom. He hid on the balcony and fell asleep. He awoke when the woman returned, and mounted his attack. Pujayasa smashed a laptop and a curling iron against her and beat her. He then used the curling iron cord and phone cord to choke the woman. Throughout the horrifying ordeal, the woman fought for her life, biting her attacker, trying to stab him with a corkscrew, kicking him repeatedly, and attempting to scream for help.

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Cruise Ship Slip and Falls

May 2, 2014

Slip and fall, and tripping accidents occur at alarming rates on cruise ships. Our Miami cruise ship accident lawyers know how these accidents can happen anywhere, from the ship's deck, by the pool, in the many restaurants and dining halls, on gangways, or during on shore excursions. Due to the large number of wet surfaces aboard a cruise ship, the limited number of life guards, and the sometimes crowded conditions on the ship, slip and fall accidents are more common on cruise ships than in many other locations.

Slip and fall accidents can lead to a variety of injuries, ranging from the very minor to the catastrophic. Possible injuries include:

• Cuts and lacerations--while relatively minor, these injuries can require medical treatment and can lead to more serious infections. Certain lacerations can effect muscle, tendons and require a good deal of emergent and follow up care.

• Broken bones--slipping and falling on a slippery surface can result in broken limbs, hips, and the like, which will equate to medical expenses and missed days at work.

• Back and spinal cord injuries--the back is particularly prone to injury during a slip and fall accidents. Back injuries can range from lower back contusions, compressions, and strains, all the way to damaged nerve roots in the spinal cord and potential paralysis.

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Four Year Old Dies in Cruise Ship Pool Accident

April 28, 2014

In early February of 2014, one young boy died and a second barely survived after a pool accident occurred on a cruise ship headed towards Florida. The boys, aged four and six, were cruising aboard the Norwegian Breakaway. This 18-deck ship that holds 4,000 passengers is one of Norwegian's newest ships, boasting a New York City theme and a Manhattan home-port. There are numerous pools abound the ship, including an aqua park designed for young children. There is also a supervised program for children aged three to 17 called "Splash Academy."

The two young brothers were found in the pool on Monday, February 3, 2014, at around 11:30 a.m., just as the Florida bound ship was passing Cape Lookout, off the coast of North Carolina. Emergency medical workers on the ship were able to revive the six year old. He and his grandmother were airlifted by a Marine Corps helicopter to Carolina East Medical Center in New Bern. Despite extensive efforts, the four year old could not be revived.

Norwegian Cruise Line spokeswoman AnneMarie Mathews has declined to release information as to which pool the children were found in, or whether they were signed into the "Splash Academy."

Sadly, our Miami cruise ship accident lawyers know how this recent drowning is just one of many to occur in cruise ship pools. In March of 2013, a four year old from Minnesota was found in a pool on a cruise ship docked at Port Canaveral. Chase Christopher Lykken had been deprived of oxygen for at least 6 minutes while in the Disney Fantasy pool. Chase Lykken was in critical condition, and remained in a vegetative state for some time. MRI's showed extensive brain damage. Amazingly, the four year old continues to make strides towards recovery but likely remain permanently disabled for life. His cost of care for his lifetime, could well be in the tens of millions of dollars.

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Cruises Gone Wrong: Part II of The Worst Cruise Ship Disasters of All Time

April 23, 2014

Today, over nine million passengers travel on cruises that depart from North American ports each year. While the number of pleasure cruise travelers has increased over the past few years, the safety aboard these ships has not improved correspondingly. Countless claims of injuries, assaults by crew members, virulent illnesses, and even deaths arise each year following cruise ship vacations.

In Part I of this two part series, our Miami cruise ship injury lawyers looked at four of the most disastrous cruises of all time. We addressed the stranded Carnival Triumph and Carnival Splendor, which both suffered engine fires that left the ships grounded and without power. We next looked at the infamous Costa Concordia, which ran aground and tipped to its side near Italy, killing 32 passengers. Finally, the Seabourn Spirits, a small cruise ship, was shockingly attacked by pirates and sustained rocket damage.

In Part II, we will address another four cruise ship disasters that are sure to make any would be vacationer worried, and highlight the need for increased safety standards in the cruise industry.

5. Celebrity Mercury--in 2010, over 400 of the 2,600 passengers and crew on board the Celebrity Mercury luxury cruise, which departed from Charleston, South Carolina, were stricken ill by a terrible stomach virus. The Centers for Disease Control deemed the outbreak to be from a virulent strain of norovirus, a bug that cases vomiting, diarrhea, and nausea, among other gastrointestinal ills.

6. Norwegian Dawn--in 2005, a massive 70 foot wave smashed into the Norwegian Dawn, flooding over 62 cabins. Roughly 300 of the ship's passengers disembarked early in Charleston once the storm had passed.

7. S.S. Eastland--this historically disastrous cruise ship rolled over just three years after the sinking of the Titanic. The passenger tour ship rolled over while in port in Chicago. Over 840 of its 2,500 passengers perished in this tragic accident.

8. RMS Titanic--the most notorious cruise ship disaster of all time, the Titanic, once deemed unsinkable, struck an iceberg during its maiden voyage. The gigantic ship sank into the frigid water, killing more than 1,500 of the passengers and crew members aboard.

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Cruises Gone Wrong: Part I of The Worst Cruise Ship Disasters of All Time

April 23, 2014

Cruises are one of the world's most popular vacation options. Each year, over 20,000,000 individuals board a cruise ship, searching for fun and relaxation. The cruise ship industry generates over $37.5 billion for the U.S. economy. Sometimes, however, our Miami cruise ship accident lawyers know how this perfect vacation can go horribly wrong. Since 1979, a total of 55 cruise ships have sunk. One hundred and seventy two passengers have died aboard a cruise ship, and countless others have been injured. Just last week, a "Ferry," not classified as a "cruise ship," sank in the waters off South Korea.

This tragic event has already cost the lives of over 100 people ( recovered bodies), many of them 16 & 17 year old high school students on a trip, with about 200 more souls unaccounted for and unfortunately, presumed dead. This avoidable, yet tragic event, in and of itself will account for almost as many lost lives as all the cruise disasters since 1979. Just a short time ago lives were lost and people injured when a Staten Island Ferry in New York crashed into the pier. Further, a string of high profile disappearances aboard cruise ship add to the potential safety issues.

The following is a look at four of the worst cruise disasters of all time. This initial part of our list of cruise ship calamities is both interesting and informative, providing you with insight into what can go wrong on a cruise.

1. Carnival Triumph--just last year, a fire occurred on the Carnival Triumph which knocked out the ship's propulsion system. The ship, carrying nearly 4,000 passengers and crew from Galveston, Texas, was supposed to embark on a four day fabulous Caribbean adventure. Instead, passengers were stranded aboard the damaged ship for eight days. The ship was left floating in the Gulf of Mexico without power, a working septic system, or air conditioning. Finally, the boat was towed to shore.

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The Top 7 Hazards that You Face While on a Cruise

March 24, 2014

A cruise seems like the ideal vacation for many people. A person can settle into a room and unpack one time while visiting many different ports-of-call. There are flexible dining options so one can eat at any time without having to schedule the day around set meal times. It is possible to wear nothing but shorts and flip flops the entire trip or a vacationer can drag out the sequins and pearls or tuxedo. Sometimes, it is hard to see the downside, until a person is injured as the result of one of the many hidden dangers of a cruise vacation.

At Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, P.A., we know the serious injuries that happen every day on cruise ships. Our knowledgeable Miami cruise ship attorneys have more than one hundred and twenty (120) years of combined legal experience in gathering the evidence necessary to get justice for victims of cruise ship negligence, which can take many different forms.

Although there are many different events that can bring a tragic end to a memorable vacation, here are seven of the most common cruise ship injuries:

• Slip and fall accidents - The slippery surfaces and swaying decks of a cruise ship lead to many slip/fall or trip/fall accidents. The change in flooring from one section of the ship to another also contributes to many falls. These serious accidents can lead to traumatic brain injury, broken bones, and spinal cord damage.

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Slip/Trip and Fall Injuries are Common on Cruise Ships

March 18, 2014

Although a cruise ship is not the first location that likely springs to mind when you think about a slip and fall injury, this is one of the most common injuries on a cruise ship. The motion of the cruise ship at sea combined with the almost ubiquitous presence of water and crowded common areas leads to many falls. Uneven surfaces also lead to many cruise ship slip and fall and trip and fall accidents.

When you are injured because the cruise ship failed to maintain floors and passageways in a safe manner, the experienced South Florida cruise ship accident attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, P.A. will fight to get you the money to compensate you for your injuries.

There are times when a passenger will fall and the fall was not caused by any individual's or company's negligence. It certainly is possible to get dizzy or trip over one's own feet, but often there is an external cause that could have been remedied before it led to the injury suffered in the fall. On a cruise ship, some of the common hazards include:

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The Cruise Ship May Be Liable for Your Excursion Injury

March 11, 2014

Many people are willing to try more adventurous activities while on vacation than they ever would during their everyday lives the rest of the year. Someone whose greatest risk at home was trying yoga in a hot room might find himself diving off a wall or galloping down the beach. While some of the excursions offered by many cruise ships do carry an inherent risk of injury, there are times when the cruise ship is responsible, at least partially, for the harm suffered by its passengers while off the ship.

There are far more serious injuries on cruise ships and during excursions every year than most people, even regular cruisers, are aware. The experienced South Florida cruise ship accident attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, P.A. understand the lengths to which the cruise industry will go to avoid taking responsibility for its negligence and we work hard to get justice for our clients.

Holding a cruise ship responsible for the injury that a passenger suffers while on a shore excursion is not straightforward. Often, the operators of these excursions are independent companies with international registrations and there are no strong ties between the cruise line and the tour operator. However, it is possible to recover from the cruise ship under certain circumstances.

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Norovirus Sickens Hundreds in Two More Cruise Ship Outbreaks

March 3, 2014

People excitedly plan for their cruise vacations for months, if not years. They purchase outfits in anticipation of their formal evenings and make sure that they have enough casual clothes to attend the various events, excursions, and midnight buffets. With this in mind, the last thing a person looking forward to a cruise vacation thinks about is what he or she should bring to stay confined to the cabin while sick. However, this is exactly what happened to more than 600 passengers and crew members onboard the Royal Caribbean's Explorer of the Sea and nearly 200 passengers and crew on the Caribbean Princess, one of Princess Cruises' ships, in cruises leaving port at the end of January 2014.

Cruise ships make billions of dollars, much of it tax-free, every year, but do not effectively prevent outbreaks that make thousands of people seriously ill each year. The experienced Miami cruise ship accident attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, P.A. understand the complex organizational structure of cruise ships and can get victims of cruise industry negligence the compensation that they deserve. It should be cautioned that cases involving sickness on a cruise ship are not wlays worth bring a claim for. You should consult with a lawyer about your possible claim. Cruise line tickets limit the time within you must report a claim and file suit significantly. The tickets ofter determine in what venue, City and Court, cases may be brought. Many cruise lines, regardless of where in the world negligence occurred, require that the claim be brought in Miami, Fl, our home city.

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