Results tagged “Cruise Accident Lawyer” from Maritime Law Blog

December 15, 2014

What to Do When You have a Cruise Ship Slip and Fall Accident

Cruise Slip and Fall Accident.jpgCruise ship slip and fall injuries occur with regularity. These accidents occur so often that cruise lines have investigation procedures in place designed to gather evidence and information in a way to help them should they be sued.

The process starts at the ship's medical facility. It is very common for a passenger to be given a statement form at the medical facility to fill out. Within the statement form is usually a question asking "What could you have done to prevent the accident." This whole purpose of this question is to get the injured passenger to admit he or she was at fault. If the passenger indicates that he or she could have done something to prevent the accident, the cruise line's lawyers will use that statement against the passenger. The cruise line's efforts to gain evidence to support their defenses do not end there.

A safety officer is also dispatched to investigate the claim as part the cruise line's procedures when passenger reports an accident. The safety officer often times interviews the injured passenger, travel companions and any eyewitness. Part of the reason behind these interviews is to elicit admissions that the injured person was at fault and the cruise line was not at fault. Furthermore, CCTV video of the area is reviewed. If this video is helpful to the cruise line, it will save it to be played latter at trial.

Many times when a slip and fall accident occurs, there are no signs or cones placed in the area warning the passenger of the slippery condition of the deck. After the accident, crew members erect signs and cones in the area of the accident. Also, the crew members mop or squeegee the area clean. It is only after the signs are placed and the area cleaned, that a safety officer photographs the area. This is done so the cruise line's attorneys can later argue to a jury that the area was free from water, and if there was any liquid in the area, there was a sign warning the passenger about the condition.

There are things injured passenger can do to help his or her own case. First, the passenger could have a travel companion take photographs of the area immediately after the incident. In most situations, the photographs taken immediately after the accident will be admitted into evidence and shown to the jury. Therefore, the jury will see the area as it existed at the time of the accident and not the sanitized version usually depicted in safety officers' photographs. Second, a travel companion could take down the names and contact information of eyewitnesses. These witnesses are invaluable to a slip and fall injury claim as the people could testify as to the condition of the deck at the time of the incident and perhaps even establish that the cruise line knew or should have known about the hazardous condition and did nothing. Photographs and witnesses could be the difference between winning or losing in court.

Bringing a lawsuit is an important decision. If you suffered a slip and fall injury aboard a cruise ship and would like to speak with a lawyer, please contact us toll free at (800) 499-0551 for a free consultation.

September 13, 2012

Carnival Cruise Line's Attempt to Dismiss Passenger's Injury Lawsuit Fails

Carnival Injury Lawers.jpgA part of the allure of cruising is the excursions offered at the various ports of call. However, most passengers do not know the safety standards at these ports of call are a far cry from what they are used to in the United States. Decreased safety standards, unfortunately, result in several accidents to vacationers each year. Maritime law recognizes this problem. It requires cruise lines to warn of known dangers in places where their passengers are invited or expected to visit. It also requires cruise lines to properly vet the tour operators and excursions offered aboard their cruise ships. This law is designed to arm passengers with knowledge in order for them to make informed decisions on their safety while in foreign ports. Often times when a passenger sues for an injury occurring at a port of call, the cruise lines ask the court to dismiss the claim. These attempts to dismiss are met with varying success. The cruise injury attorneys of Brais law recently was required to address such a challenge by a cruise line.


Manning v. Carnival Corp.

Brais Law represents a Carnival Cruise passenger who broke her ankle when she fell down an unsafe stairway located in Chankanaab National Park during an excursion selected by the cruise line. The dangerous nature or the park's stairways are well known to tour operators and companies doing business in the area. However, the unsafe nature of the stairway was not communicated to the cruise passengers.

The attorneys of Brais Law filed a complaint against Carnival in federal court alleging the cruise line was negligent as it had superior knowledge of the dangerous stairway but failed to warn its passengers of the dangers. The complaint also alleged the cruise line was negligent for selecting an excursion that takes place in an area known to be dangerous. Carnival asked the Court to dismiss the lawsuit alleging the complaint failed to state a legal cause of action. The Court rejected Carnival's argument and allowed the claim to proceed. A copy of the Court's order can be found here.


Conclusion

Though cruise lines are sometime successful in convincing courts to dismiss lawsuits concerning injuries occurring on an excursions, when facts exist that could prove the cruise line know or should have known of a danger and fails to warn its passengers, courts are likely to allow such claims to proceed.


March 11, 2012

Costa Cruises Not Returning Fire Damaged ALLEGRA to Service

Costa Allegra Fire.jpgAs reported by Maritimelawblog last month, fire broke out in the engine room of the Costa cruise ship ALLEGRA on February 27th while sailing in the Indian Ocean. The ALLEGRA, a former cargo carrier built in 1969, was towed to Seychelles where she currently remains. Micky Arison, CEO of Carnival Corp. (owner of Costa Cruises), reported to Wall Street analysts during a conference call that ALLEGRA will be sold or scrapped. Costa Cruises announced it was replacing the ALLEGRA with the 927-passenger VOYAGER for the upcoming on European cruising season.

The ALLEGRA fire was the second calamity to strike Costa Cruises this year following the CONCORDIA sinking of January 13th. Two major disasters combined with a significant drop in ticket sales fueled speculation that the Carnival Corp. may possibly re-brand the Costa name.