According to research from Statistic Brain, every year, about 20,335,000 people will vacation on a cruise ship. Of those, 1,600,000 are family groups with children 18 and younger. However, most cruise ship riders tend to be 50 or older. The most popular destinations to visit include the Caribbean, the Bahamas, Hawaii, and the Mediterranean Islands. However, what if your trip is less than sunny and you experience a cruise ship accident or assault? You may be eligible for compensation if you contact an attorney.
What Constitutes a Cruise Ship Accident or Assault?
There are plenty of ways to harm yourself on a cruise ship. You can slip and fall on a wet deck, trip down a staircase, fall in a bathroom, and even accidentally tumble off the ship. If the floors are wet or if the equipment malfunctions on the ship, your vacation will quickly go south. If you suffered an accident near the ship but off-board, such as when making stops during the cruise or on the tenders or gangways, you could be compensated.
In other cases, you may be attacked or assaulted by a fellow vacationer or even a crew member on the ship. If you were, call our attorneys anytime 24/7 to get justice.
What Are Some Laws Regulating Cruise Ship Safety?
Cruise ship laws are very different compared to other means of transportation. The International Convention for the Safety of Life at Sea or SOLAS legislation protects the safety of all passengers on a cruise ship. Captains must abide by certain mandates, radio communication must be available, and the ship must have an evacuation plan in case of fire. Also, the hull of the ship must always be secure so if damaged, the ship won’t sink. There also must be sufficient lifeboats if the ship has to evacuate.
There’s also the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act. Passed in 2010, this Act protects vacationers who may have suffered sexual assault while aboard a cruise ship. Before you embark, you should receive a security guide that includes the right phone numbers and contact information for law enforcement. All doors to rooms passengers can access must also include peepholes.
How Do You Start Filing a Cruise Ship Accident or Assault Lawsuit?
If you were a victim of a cruise ship accident or assault, call our law firm today or fill out our free case evaluation form. Our attorneys can possibly help you get the compensation you deserve. If you lost a family member or friend because they disappeared while on a cruise ship, it’s the ship’s responsibility to look for this person. If they don’t do a thorough job, you could sue for negligence.
If a lost passenger is never found, you may also still have a case. The Cruise Safety Act of 2010 insists all handrails must be safe and functional. These must also be positioned over the cabin deck at a height of 42 inches. If not, you could again have a negligence case. If the ship didn’t let passengers know the seas would be rough, if the handrails malfunctioned, if the passenger may have been assaulted before their disappearance, and if they were drinking too much alcohol on the ship, these are all grounds for a cruise ship accident or assault lawsuit.
What Should You Expect From a Cruise Ship Accident or Assault Lawsuit?
However, it’s not always easy to win these cruise ship accident or assault lawsuits. Certain cruise ship companies invoke clauses like the forum selection clause. Used in the Carnival Cruise Lines, Inc. v. Shute case in 1991, this and other clauses can prevent certain cruise ship lawsuits from going to court, even if someone fell overboard or experienced injury or assault onboard. You can typically find clause information right on your ticket, so make sure to read carefully before you leave.
Since many cruise ships are based in other countries and do business outside of the United States, the legal lines can blur. However, our firm has a successful track record handling cruise ship accident and assault cases. If you suffered an injury from an accident or assault on a cruise ship, you can contact us anytime 24/7 for a free legal review. Our attorneys will listen to your details to decide if you have a case. Call today to find out if you’re eligible for compensation.