Although cruises are inherently exciting because of the almost unlimited choices of entertainment, excursions, and recreational activities, an international cruise on the Amazon offers a unique experience. While this type of adventure also could pose potential dangers, most cruise passengers presume their cruise line complies with or exceeds industry safety standards. This assumption is inaccurate in some cases. Although a fatally injured passenger might have a right to pursue a lawsuit seeking damages, this can be a difficult task to the extent the Death on the High Seas Act represents the controlling law. In this blog, our cruise ship injury lawyers review a cruise ship tragedy that reveals the vulnerability of passengers.
Larry and Christie Hammer, an elderly married couple embarked on an Amazon River cruise offered by a Peruvian company. While the couple was sleeping in their cabin, a power strip supplied by the cruise company and used by the plaintiff to power his CPAP machine caused a fire. Even after the couple’s cabin was engulfed in flame, no fire alarms sounded. Mr. Hammer died on the scene, and his wife died from carbon dioxide poisoning on the way to a hospital. Because fire alarms did not alert the Hammers and crew members of the fire, the fire raged on for 21 minutes before any cruise personnel came to the couple’s aid. Continue reading →