Articles Posted in Illness On Board Cruise Ship

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While a cruise to the Great Barrier Reef in Australia might sound like a dream vacation, the trip became a tragedy for a grandmother who passed away in her stateroom during the cruise.  The 79-year-old seasoned cruise passenger was a grandma traveling with her daughter and grandson when she fell sick during the ten-day cruise.  The onboard doctors suggested she probably contracted the illness before boarding the ship.  According to media reports and as reported by our Cruise Ship Injury Lawyer, she was upbeat, in good health, and a veteran of seven cruises over the last decade.

After the grandma passed away, her surviving family members contended that their loved one contracted the gastroentroenteritis infection that caused her death during the cruise.  Although the cruise line vehemently denied that the elderly passenger contracted her illness onboard, the two family members that accompanied her on the cruise also contracted the illness despite not sharing her stateroom.  An autopsy had been scheduled to confirm the cause of death according to news sources. Continue reading →

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When you saved and planned to take your family on a cruise vacation, you probably anticipated great food in massive quantities, unlimited forms of recreation, and top-notch entertainment.  You probably did not contemplate experiencing serious injury because of the negligent conduct of a crewmember and the cruise line.  Although the vast majority of cruise passengers escape from their time on the high seas without incident, many people suffer serious injuries each year.  As you prepared for your cruise, you probably did not seek legal advice because you did not realize you agreed to a long, detailed contract with many unfavorable provisions.  Many passengers never bother to look at the back of their cruise ticket while those that do rarely try to wade through the dense legalese.  Our Miami cruise accident attorneys have highlighted several common provisions in cruise contracts that merit careful consideration by travelers.

Horrible Medical Care Is Not Our Problem: While the medical care on most cruise ships is perfectly acceptable, most passenger contracts include a provision stating the cruise line is not responsible for medical malpractice committed by its physicians, nurses, and other medical personnel, or staff.  The language is designed to constitute a waiver of liability of the cruise ship when substandard medical care causes serious injury or wrongful death.  The cruise line also will claim that medical personnel, who make errors or omissions, are independent contractors rather than employees to evade liability.  An experienced Florida personal injury lawyer understands that being relegated to suing the physician, who often will not be a citizen of the U.S. or subject to jurisdiction in the U.S., will be less desirable because the doctor will have far less insurance coverage than the cruise line.  Our lawyers have the experience and expertise to avoid these potential legal pitfalls. Continue reading →

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As South Florida’s pre-eminent cruise ship injury attorneys, we have handled many cases involving cruise lines that fail to maintain the standard of care they owe to their passengers. Our United States Supreme Court announced the rule of law that cruise lines must follow to protect their passengers while in navigable waters over 50 years ago. The high Court ruled that the owner of a ship owes to all persons on board a duty of reasonable care under the given circumstances.  The cruise ship must have notice of the potential danger, and the danger must be one that is not limited to the dangers of the sea, such as being swept overboard by a rogue wave. Rather, the ship owner has the duty to protect passengers from injuries that occur on the boat that could also occur on land, as long as the danger was not open and obvious. One example is slipping and falling on a wet deck.

The ship owner’s obligation to protect passengers extends to ports and activities at the ports as well. Cruise ships have a duty to warn passengers about dangers they may encounter off the boat. Again, however, the cruise line must have some form of notice of the danger and extends to places where the ship’s passengers are likely to visit. For example, a passenger could get hurt on an excursion sponsored by or associated with the cruise line and be liable for the passenger’s injuries. If, however, the passenger fell into a volcano while trespassing, then the cruise line is not responsible. The example is a bit absurd, but it proves the point.  Continue reading →

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The Zika virus has caused an uproar worldwide and is one reason why the Rio Olympics may suffer this year, as many athletes and spectators have chosen not to go to Brazil for fear of contracting the Zika virus.  This particular virus has been linked to microcephaly, a birth defect which causes infants to have small and misshapen heads.  Recent cases of Zika in the Miami area have caused South Florida residents some concern as the Zika virus has now officially been contracted in the United States.

Zika Cases Identified Near South Florida Port

The Florida Department of Health has confirmed four people contracted the Zika virus in a small area of downtown Miami, near the port where many cruise ships take off.  This has understandably caused many potential cruise ship goers concern as to whether or not it is safe to go on a cruise.  The Florida Department of Health believes the four cases of Zika were locally transmitted and not travel-related.  Continue reading →

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South Florida will be welcoming three new cruise ships this fall from Carnival Cruise, Royal Caribbean, and Holland America Line.  The largest of these three cruise ships, Royal Caribbean’s “Harmony of the Seas,” is equipped to handle 6,000 passengers, and will have seven separate “neighborhoods” aboard the ship.  The Harmony of the Seas cruise ship is the largest cruise ship ever built and will have an Imax theater, a Skyride “cycling track,” as well as a water park for children.  Carnival Cruise and Holland America Line will have similar amenities to serve their passengers.

Be Prepared if You Are Planning on Taking a Cruise

Cruise ships are widely popular, and the unveiling of three extremely large and updated cruise ships only confirms that the cruise ship industry is most certainly booming.  However, while cruise ships should be enjoyable vacations, problems can occur at any time without warning.  As such, if you take all steps possible to protect yourself, you may be able to reduce the risk that you and your loved ones will suffer an injury or illness while onboard the cruise ship. Continue reading →

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If you have ever had a stomach bug or flu, you know just how awful the symptoms can be.  Norovirus is an extremely contagious stomach-related infection that has been known to plague cruise ships, causing numerous passengers and crew members to become ill.  A recent court ruling in the United Kingdom, the first of its kind in U.K. courts, determined that Fred Olson Cruise Lines is responsible for the illnesses suffered by numerous passengers onboard the cruise ship Boudicca in March and April of 2011.  The U.K. court found that the Norovirus victims are entitled to compensation for their suffering as a result of contracting Norovirus.

The Boudicca cruise ship had been traveling in the Canary Islands, Cape Verde, and the Iberian Peninsula when the Norovirus outbreak occurred, confining many passengers to their cabins for the duration of the cruise.  While Norovirus can be contracted anywhere, when contracted on a cruise ship, the rate at which people can catch the illness goes up as there may not be an opportunity for ill passengers to exit the ship at any given moment.  If the cruise ship is not close to land, passengers may be stuck dealing with the illness until the cruise ship can reach its destination. Continue reading →

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Thus far in 2016, there have been a few outbreaks of norovirus aboard cruise ships.  Norovirus is a highly contagious virus that causes intense stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. This illness can prove dangerous, especially for young children and older adults.  Common complications of norovirus include dehydration, malnutrition, and rarely even death.  Our cruise ship accident lawyers have found that cruise ships are potential sites of norovirus contamination due to the sheer number of people aboard and close quarters.

In January, the first norovirus case of the year occurred on a cruise ship out of Los Angeles.  Approximately six percent of passengers aboard the Crown Princess contracted the illness, leaving over 3,000 sick.  The Crown Princess has been the site of several norovirus outbreaks in previous years.

More recently, passengers aboard the Oceania Riviera took ill with norovirus.  About ten percent of the passengers are experiencing nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and the like.  The ship will be evaluated upon its return to Miami to attempt to determine the cause of the outbreak and whether the ship followed sanitation protocol. Continue reading →

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The cruise ship accident attorneys at Greenberg, Stone & Urbano know how stressful and confusing it can be to be involved in a cruise ship accident.  We offer the following look at some questions frequently asked by cruise ship accident victims.  For assistance with your individual case, call us as soon as possible after your injury.

Q:  What do I do after I have been injured on a cruise ship?

A:  You should first seek appropriate medical care.  Contact the ship’s medical center right away.  The ship should offer 24 hour medical care, ensuring you receive the medical attention you need no matter when the accident occurs. Continue reading →

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If you are injured on a cruise ship, there are certain steps you will need to take to ensure you receive the medical care you need and protect your legal rights.  At Greenberg, Stone & Urbano, we understand that cruise ship accident victims may be confused following the accident.  They will likely be in pain and unsure of what procedures should be adhered to.  The following is a look at some vital steps that should be followed in the event you are injured or take seriously ill on a cruise ship.

Seek Immediate Medical Help

Your first step is to seek help immediately following your injury or illness.  The quicker you receive first aid and evaluation by the ship’s doctor, the sooner you will receive the care you need to prevent further damage and pain.  Prompt medical attention will also protect your potential case later on as it establishes the injury’s direct link to the accident. Continue reading →

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In the unfortunate event you are injured while on a cruise ship or take seriously ill, you expect to be provided with skilled medical care.  The cruise ship physicians, nurses, and medical staff are generally the only medical personnel available to treat injured passengers.  These medical professionals must provide the quality care cruise ship passengers need.  However, not all injured cruise ship passengers receive the care they deserve.  At times, medical professionals act in a negligent manner, leaving passengers with more severe injuries or illnesses and potentially even causing death.

Our cruise ship accident lawyers have assisted a number of passengers injured due to medical malpractice aboard the ship.  We understand the complex nature of these cases and will fight to see that our clients who received substandard care are provided with the compensation they deserve.

Cruise Ship Passengers Can Now Sue for Medical Malpractice

Up until recently, cruise ship passengers did not have the right to file medical malpractice claims against the cruise line.  That changed with a 2014 case that came out of the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals.  The case involved an 82 year old cruise ship passenger who hit his head while disembarking for a sightseeing trip.  He was transported to the ship’s medical unit, where the nurse informed him that he should return to his cabin and rest.  Sadly, it was discovered hours later that the passenger in fact had a serious brain injury that killed him within days.  Continue reading →

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