Norwegian news outlets have reported that an Italian woman recently went overboard near Flam, Norway while aboard the Costa Fortuna cruise ship. The 52 year old woman apparently went after a violent episode with another person aboard the ship. She plummeted some 30 to 35 meters down to the water below. Emergency responders quickly pulled her out of the water, but she suffered critical injuries and was unconscious when retrieved. A witness to the incident reports that the woman screamed before going overboard. News sources have not clarified whether she was a passenger or crew member
Our Miami cruise ship injury lawyers find this to be the latest in the over 250 overboard accidents that have occurred in the past decade. Last year, a Virginia Tech student fell overboard a Carnival cruise ship while on spring break. His body was never found. Overboard accidents are not common, but when they do occur the results are generally catastrophic. This recent overboard victim is fortunate to have survived. Few others survive overboard accidents, with many not making it through the immense fall and others perishing after not being located soon enough at sea. Many overboard accidents happen at night, which could leave the victims alone in the water for several hours before the cruise ship realizes they are missing.
Falling overboard is not generally something that occurs by pure accident. Often, alcohol will be involved in these accidents or other people. Foul play is suspected in many overboard accidents. It is not always easy to determine the cause of an overboard accident, especially if it occurs in an area of the ship that is not monitored by cameras.
Overboard Accidents Could Be Prevented with Technology
The Coast Guard regulates the minimum height of railings in an effort to prevent overboard accidents and ensures crew members are trained to respond in the event of a crisis. Even with these steps, however, overboard accidents continue to occur. In response to this ongoing issue, several companies have produced cutting edge technologies that could greatly reduce the number of people that die in overboard accidents. Fall alert technologies use a series of motion sensors and thermal detection systems to alert the cruise ship that someone has fallen overboard. This could provide the quick response time needed to save the falling passenger.
Some cruise ships have already implemented this technology and the Coast Guard is considering requiring all cruise lines do so. In the future, overboard fatalities could become a thing of the past with immediate notification and a well-trained crew.
If your loved one is killed in an overboard accident, you may be entitled to compensation from the cruise line. Contact a cruise ship accident attorney as soon as possible to explore your legal rights and options for recovery.
Greenberg Stone and Urbano: Seeking Justice for Those Killed Aboard Cruise Ships
Overboard accidents have killed many cruise ship passengers over the years. If your loved one is killed in a cruise ship accident, the Miami Cruise Ship Accident Attorneys at Greenberg Stone and Urbano are here to help. We have over 130 collective years of experience representing cruise accident victims and their families in South Florida. We have the experience and knowledge to provide you with top notch legal representation. Our firm has received a coveted AV rating from Martindale Hubbell and the Miami Herald recognized us as a top firm in South Florida. Allow our exceptional attorneys to provide you with superior legal services in the South Florida area. Call us at (888) 499-9700 or (305) 595-2400 or visit our website to schedule your initial consultation.