In 2010, a 21 year old cruise passenger who had just embarked on a seven day Caribbean cruise suddenly became ill after eating a cookie. He died a short time later due to an allergic reaction to peanuts. Five years prior, a 70 year old doctor died after being thrown from the top staircase aboard a cruise line when rough seas jolted the ship. More recently, a young six year old boy drowned aboard a Carnival ship on the last leg of the Caribbean voyage. All of these cruise ship accidents show that while death is not the first thing that comes to mind while planning a dream cruise vacation, that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t happen.
Each year, approximately 200 people die on cruise ships. More than three quarters of these deaths will occur in a single disaster. While cruise ship deaths are still less common than airplane or car accidents, they can still occur. When they do, it is the family members of their departed loved ones left grappling with the difficult aftermath.
Causes of Cruise Ship Deaths
Some cruise ship deaths are the result of natural occurrences. Many cruise passengers are retired or nearing retirement age, and old age related health concerns claim the lives of some. The other deaths, however, fall into the realm of accidental or even intentional.
Overboard accidents are catastrophic, as it is nearly impossible to survive a fall from such a large vessel into open waters. Overboard accidents do not merely happen. It is difficult to fall overboard on ships due to the protections installed. However, overboard accidents can occur when passengers are intoxicated, attempt to commit suicide, or are thrown overboard by another. In 2006, a 15 year old student was traveling with her family. One evening, she and some other children partied and drank alcohol. Her sister observed the bartender serving her, despite her ship card being marked as a child. The highly intoxicated teen fell overboard while vomiting, never to be seen again.
Murder can occur on a cruise ship, just as it can on land. In 2006, a 53 year old woman vacationing with her husband went missing. Her body was later found floating at sea, but an autopsy concluded strangulation was the cause of death. The husband was charged with her death some seven years later, after evidence was uncovered that he transferred considerable assets from his now deceased spouse to his own account.
Getting Sick at Sea
Illnesses can plague cruise voyages due to the close quarters involved. While most people readily recover from such illnesses, a few can die due to complications that arise. A 53 year old traveling on a Holland ship suffered such a fate after cruise line doctors failed to provide the medical attention he needed.
Greenberg Stone and Urbano: Justice for those Wrongfully Killed at Sea
If your loved one was killed or vanished aboard a cruise ship, the Miami Cruise Ship Accident Attorneys at Greenberg Stone and Urbano can help you obtain the justice you deserve. With over 130 collective years of experience, our attorneys have the experience you need to bring a strong wrongful death suit against the negligent cruise line. Our attorneys will then zealously fight to see that you obtain compensation for all of your damages stemming from the loss of your loved one, including loss of income, loss of inheritance, loss of companionship and love, and much more. Our unmatched legal excellence has earned us an AV rating from Martindale Hubbell and recognition as one of South Florida’s top firms by the Miami Herald. Call us at (888) 499-9700 or (305) 595-2400 or visit our website to schedule your initial consultation.