Maritime & Cruise Ship Accident Lawyer Blog

Articles Posted in Cruise Ship Accidents/Incidents

Four passengers were injured onboard Royal Carribean’s Anthem of the Seas after the ship was caught in dangerous weather conditions over the weekend. The Anthem of the Seas encountered hurricane force winds, with some guts reports reaching 130 miles per hour and 30-40 foot waves. The nature and extent of those injured are not currently known. At first, Royal Carriban reported no injuries. Now, they are reporting no serious injuries. Martime lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz, PA state that this is not the first time an RCCL passenger ship has knowingly left the port directly into the teeth of dangerous weather. Back in 2012, RCCL vessel “Freedom of the Seas” encountered similar weather conditions and high seas after the vessel set sail into a developing tropical cyclone system/ tropical storm just after it departed off the Florida east Coast.

In the 2012 “Freedom” incident, passengers were thrown around and across the ship along along with plates, dishes, and everything else imaginible. Fixtures fell, ceilings were falling, it was pure chaos. Ina federal lawsuit filed, attorneys argued that the Royal Carribean ship should never decided to set sail and risked the lives and safety of passengers by placing them into harms way. Passengers sustained serious injuries because a decision to set sail was made despite clear warnings from the National Weather Service of the potential for rapidly tropical cyclone development in the immediate path of that vessel.

In the Anthem of the Seas, cruise ship accident lawyers say they will need to get a hold of the weather reports and forecasts to see whether the “Anthem of the Seas” should have taken another route, or simply stayed in port as well.  The decision to sail rests with the captain. If the captain feels that it is unsafe for the vessel to depart he can make the decision that the ship should stay in port. The decision to remain in port can also be made shoreside. Weather buoys located in the Atlantic can also provide warning of expected wind and sea conditions well in advance, along with the weather forecasts. Generally speaking, sudden and drastic weather phenomenons are not actionable as they may deemed acts of god or unforseeable in nature and difficult to prevent.  But cruise ships are also equipped with state of the art weather forecasting technology that should make cruise line companies accountable if they do decide to stay the course, despite clear weather warnings.

In previous cases, I have seen heard the ship captain say that these modern day ships are able to withstand 40-50 foot waves. But to the average cruise ship passenger I don’t think they would want to be on that ship, states Gerson. We will wait to see what the ship knew or should have known. More importantly will be whether or not the ship captain and Royal Carribean excercised reasonable care under the circumstances.  If they didn’t and were negliegnt, Royal Carribean could be on the legal hook.  Perhaps even a punitve damages claim could be filed depending on what information was readily known and available to RCCL in this latest cruise ship accident case. If you or a loved one were injured in a cruise ship accident, or on Anthem of the Seas, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries. The personal injury and maritime attorneys at Gerson and Schwartz, PA assist injured passengers and crew members. Contact info@gslawusa.com or visit www.injuryattorneyfla.com for their assistance.

Cruise ship slip and fall accidents happen all too often. That is especially so on the vessel Carnival Breeze. The “Breeze” had its maiden voyage in June 2012 making it a relatively new ship in the Carnival fleet. The Breeze is also one of Carnival’s largest passenger ships. It is part of the “Dream” Class, and holds roughly 3,900 passengers and 900 crew members.  Slip and fall accidents inside lido market place restaurant seems to happen so frequently some wonder, should the largest cruise line in the wold take the ship out of service? The lido is located on deck 10 consisting of numerous food stations and buffet style restaurants where passengers are served breakfast, lunch, and dinner. What you also may not know, is that the Lido market place restaurant is also notorious for slip and fall accidents, many of which result in serious injuries. Slip and falls happen when the floors appear dry and can happen without any warning and at any time. The cruise ship injury lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz, PA have represented numerous passengers injured inside the Lido market place. Not just on the Carnival Breeze, but many other Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, and other cruise ships. But the Lido market place restaurant on the Breeze is in a class of it’s own. Slip and fall accidents happen with regularity and drew much attention within Carnival shortly after the vessel was placed into service in June 2012. The tile floor surfaces inside the Lido appear to have inadequate and poor slip resistance properties and are  known to be inherently defective and  dangerous. The end result, dozens upon dozens of slip and fall accidents with serious injuries. But you wouldn’t know it until its too late because Carnival doesn’t warn  passengers about the dangers that the tile floor surfaces pose.

Due to the number and nature of slip and fall accidents that occur on an almost regular basis and the failure of Carnival to find a permanent solution to the problem, claims for punitive damages are not out of question for thse cruise ship accident and injury victims. Generally speaking, punitive damages are not easily attainable and are uncommon in slip and fall accident law suits. That is because the legal standard for punitive damages requires a much higher burden to meet and more difficult to prove inthe court room. Depending on the law that applies, injury victims must prove conduct that is considered to “gross negligence” or concious disregard for the life and safety of others. But, lido makret place slip and fall accidents on the Carnival Breeze occurr so frequently that they are warranted on this particular ship says, maritime attorney Nicholas I. Gerson with Gerson and Schwartz, PA. So, one would ask, why doesn’t Carnival just repair or replace the tile floor surfaces? According to Gerson, it’s really more of a business decision. “Profits over safety”, Gerson adds, What else? As far as the Breeze is concerned, money and the financial implications of taking a huge passenger ship out of service would be very costly. This is one of Carnival’s premier money makers. The Breeze departs nearly every week. It holds the most passengers and doesn’t’ travel all that far, nor are the trips very long.

At a minimum, the Breeze would likely have to be out of service for anywhere from two weeks to a month, maybe longer. When you calculate the amount of money that Carnival would have to forfeit, return, or lose, it appears that it makes more business sense for them to just wait until the ship goes into dry dock. The Breeze however is not scheduled to go into dry dock until sometime in late 2017. In the latest law suit filed against Carnival regarding the Breeze, punitive damages have been included in two lawsuites  filed. Carnival has already moved to dismiss the punitive damages claims early on in the law suit process . There motion was rightfully denied. In other words, presiding United States District Court judge believed that based on the allegations in the complaint and combination of the applicable federal law, the claims for punitive damages should be decided on the merits.

Historically, punitive damages in federal maritime cases were not always viable until the United States Supreme Court decided Atlantic Sounding Co, Inc, v. Townsend, 557 U.S. 404 (2009). Prior to Atlantic Sounding, lower federal court’s including the United States Courts of Appeal for the Eleventh Circuit Court were of the opinion that punitive damages under federal maritime law were not recoverable. But Atlantic Sounding changed that. Post Atlantic Sounding, lower federal courts including the Southern District of Florida, have consistently held that punitive damages are recoverable under federal maritime law, for gross negligence and if there is reckless disregard for the life and safety of others. Intentional harmful conduct is not the only legal basis under which punitive are warranted. As far as the Carnival Breeze Lido market place slip and falls, Gerson adds that Carnival has known about the dangers of the lido market place and the defective tile floor surfaces. Breeze lido market place slip and falls are so common its alarming. Carnival appears to have just made a business decision to not provide a permanent solution and has refused to replace the tile floors. If you were injured in a cruise ship slip & fall accident, including on the Carnival Breeze the Miami injury attorneys at Gerson and Schwartz, PA are here to help. For more information about a lido market place slip and fall or any other injury on a cruise ship call us toll free at 1-877-475-2905, or email info@gslawusa.com.

 

 

cruise ship poolEmbarking on a cruise ship vacation, to most, is a great experience accompanied with relaxation and exploration. Nevertheless, catastrophic and often fatal accidents can and do occur on cruise ships. For instance, recently a ten-year-old girl drowned in a swimming pool on a Norwegian Cruise Line ship. Said ship had to sail immediately to a nearby port in Florida. This incident occurred on a Sunday afternoon when the ship’s medical team responded to an emergency call from the pool deck that a ten-year-old female guest was reported unresponsive.  Of course, the medical team administered quick CPR and proper emergency care. After countless efforts, the guest could not be revived.

In all, if you or a loved one is injured on a cruise ship, it is important that you hire an experienced maritime attorney. The relevant law governing your case may be complex. In fact, there are special laws both federal and international that govern injury and death lawsuits that take place at sea. Additionally, statutes of limitations are much shorter, sometimes only six months from the date of incident. If your accident occurred on navigable waters, either near the United States or near a foreign shore, this presents complex legal issues and admiralty, maritime, and even foreign laws may apply to your particular case.  

Our Miami, Florida maritime lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz PA have plentiful experience filing claims against all the major cruise lines. Our attorneys are skilled at representing passengers and crew members who suffer serious and catastrophic injuries. If you are injured, we will fight to enforce your legal rights. We also will not hesitate to bring your case to trial if a fair settlement offer is not made.

Cruise Ship Accidents

Primarily, it is important that you act quickly if you or a loved one incurs an injury on a cruise ship. It is also important to understand that when you first buy your ticket for the cruise that you are actually entering into a contract with the cruise line. This is a written contract that indicates how long you have to file a lawsuit against the cruise line if you are injured during the trip. This particular time limit may be as short as six months to one year. Thus, it is important that you retain an attorney as soon as possible to start working on your case.

When you or a loved one is injured, there are a number of helpful tips to keep in mind. First of all, you should immediately contact the ship safety or security officer to report the incident. Not only that, but you should also provide that entity with written notice that you intend to file a claim against the cruise line. It is also important that you get the name and contact information of anyone that assisted you at the scene of the accident.

From here, very important, you should get the name and contact information of any witnesses at the scene of the incident. A report should also be made to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”) if you were a victim of a serious crime. Take photos of the accident scene. Cruise lines are notorious for destroying evidence and this will help safeguard your evidence. Lastly, you should get medical help as soon as possible on the ship. Once the ship is ported, you should then seek medical attention off the ship as well.       

Hire an Experienced Attorney

Due to the several complexities in these cases, it is critical to contact an experienced maritime lawyer if you or a loved one are injured at sea. Our Miami, Florida maritime Lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz PA are highly experienced and know what to do. Our attorneys are skilled at representing passengers and crew members who suffer serious and catastrophic injuries. We are are licensed to practice law in all Florida state and federal courts. We are affiliated with other lawyers in nearly all jurisdictions across the United States where we are not admitted to practice law. Our Florida law offices are conveniently located in the heart of Miami, Florida near the port of Miami and Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale. Contact us today for a consultation!

OCEAN BUOY 2Face it, we all love vacations. They are a time to get away, clear your head, and simply relax.  What we do not want is to face a tragedy while on vacation. Tragedy can happen anywhere and to anybody. For instance, just two months ago, a passenger fell off a cruise ship off the coast of Florida. Prior to falling overboard, the passenger was involved in a verbal altercation with several of the ship’s crewmembers. These crewmembers yelled many gay slurs at said passenger who was on a vacation with his husband. Following the verbal altercations the passenger was seen falling off the side of the ship and grabbing a hold of a lifeboat. Cell phone videos captured this scary scene. The passenger eventually lost his grip and fell into the dark, treacherous ocean. The frantic search that covered 931 nautical miles was unsuccessful, and the investigation is currently pending as to the cause of this tragic incident.

Tragic accidents, can happen to anyone anywhere, even on cruise ships. If you are a cruise ship passenger or crewmember and you are injured on the cruise ship, you should hire an experienced lawyer for your case. There are special laws, both federal and international, that govern injury and death claims at sea. Fortunately, the Florida cruise ship accident lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz, PA have significant experience aggressively pursuing claims against all the major cruise lines including Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, Princess Cruises, Disney Cruise Lines, Holland America, Celebrity, Costa, Seabourn, Regent, Crystal and many other vessels.   

What to Do if You or a Loved One is Injured on a Cruise Ship

You must act fast if you or a loved one is injured on a cruise ship. When you purchase your ticket for the cruise, you are actually entering into a contract with the cruise line. This contract, in writing, indicates how long you have to file a lawsuit if you are injured, for example. This time limit can be as short as six months to one year. Thus, it is critical that you hire an attorney as soon as possible to beginning working on your case.

You should immediately contact the ship safety and/or security officer to report the accident.  You should also provide, in writing, notice that you intend to file a claim. If you were assisted by anyone at the time of the injury, you should get their names and request a copy of any documents, especially those they ask you to fill out. Also get the names and contact information of any witnesses. If you are a victim of a serious crime, you should report it to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”). It is also a good idea to take photos of the scene where the accident occurred. This will safeguard you if the cruise line later destroys evidence. Of course, you should seek medical help as soon as possible on the ship. Once docked, you should seek medical attention off the ship, as well.    

Take Action for Your Case by Hiring an Experienced Attorney

Due to the several complexities in these cases, it is critical to contact an experienced maritime lawyer if you or a loved one are injured at sea. Our Miami, Florida maritime Lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz PA are highly experienced and know what to do. Our attorneys are skilled at representing passengers and crew members who suffer serious and catastrophic injuries. If you are injured, we will fight to enforce your legal rights. We will not hesitate to bring your case to trial if a fair settlement offer is not made.

blue skyFor cruise trips, shore excursions are rapidly growing in popularity and variety. Shore excursions help maintain the interest and attention of passengers of a particular cruise. Excursions typically offer access to a wide variety of tourist areas that are different from the ports and harbors where the cruise ship rests. They are also popular because by booking a specific excursion, the individual does not have to stress about sightseeing on this or her own. Instead, the cruise ship will take care of this. The cruise company will choose a relevant and necessary onshore tourist site and allow the individual to enjoy the highest quality of time there.

Albeit fun and convenient, excursion accidents do happen, and these accidents are sometimes tragic. Just last summer an Alaska sightseeing excursion plane crashed killing all nine passengers including the pilot! This plane was carrying cruise ship passengers on a shore excursion when it suddenly crashed near Ketchikan in the Misty Fjords area. Said plane was first reported missing at around 2:06 p.m., or 6:06 p.m. Eastern Time. Less than 30 minutes after the initial report, said plane was spotted by a helicopter crew against a granite rock face. Search and rescue teams then reached the crash site which was nearly 800 feet above Ella Lake.  

Maritime laws differ significantly from ordinary personal injury laws and are highly complex and unique. Maritime laws maintain several rules pertaining to the time you may file your claim, legal liability, and the amount of money recoverable from your case. Generally, maritime law consists of a combination of different bodies of law from federal statutes, international treaties, laws of contract, and even substantive foreign law. Many people are unaware that maritime laws may govern their accident. Thus, if you are injured in a maritime accident, you should contact a qualified Florida maritime attorney.

Maritime Law and its Complexities

Maritime laws differ from your ordinary personal injury laws. For example, if a person dies more than three nautical miles off the shore, the federal law “Death on the High Seas Act” (“DOHSA”) will apply instead of state law. DOHSA maintains that only the decedent’s personal representative may bring a claim on behalf of the decedent’s surviving relatives.

Additionally, pay attention to your cruise ship ticket as it normally lists contractual limitations to filing personal injury claims.  Normally, the cruise line will have you agree, in writing, to provisions requiring you to file lawsuits in foreign jurisdictions. Cruise lines may also insert provisions in attempt to disavow liability for various aspects of the trip, such as port-of-call excursions.      

Take Action for Your Case

Due to the complexities and variations in every maritime accident case, it is important that an experienced maritime lawyer represents you. The maritime law attorneys at Gerson and Schwartz, PA are licensed to practice law in all Florida state and federal courts. We are affiliated with other lawyers in virtually all jurisdictions where we are not admitted to practice. Our attorneys have 80 years of collective experience handling such claims. We will take your civil case on a contingency basis. This means that you will not owe us anything unless we recover money on your behalf. Call us today for a FREE consultation.   

file7241281863954Instances of rape, sexual assault, and other sex crimes occur frequently on cruise ships. Just last year a cruise ship employee used a master key to enter the room of a female passenger. He hid on the room’s balcony until she returned. On her return to the room, she went to bed and was awakened by the intruder. The crewmember began choking her. The passenger fought for her life in every way she could by biting him and stabbing him with a corkscrew. The passenger was sexually assaulted, punched, and beaten with a laptop and a curling iron. She incurred brain injuries, fractures to her skull, spine, and face, and numerous bite marks. The crewmember even tried to snap the passenger’s neck. The crewmember tried to kill her. He became nervous when other passengers began knocking on the door and jumped off the balcony to the lower level in hopes of getting away. He was eventually caught.

Maritime law holds cruise lines strictly liable for the intentional, wrongful, and criminal acts of their employees. This includes rape and sexual assault. Rules of law governing conduct on cruise ships can be complex. To add to the complexities, cruise ships are governed by federal law, not state law, when the cruise ship is more than three nautical miles out at sea. If you or a loved one is a victim of a crime on a cruise ship, it is important that you seek the representation of an experienced maritime law attorney. The Miami, Florida maritime lawyers at Gerson and Schwartz PA have experience filing claims against all the major cruise lines.

The Cruise Ship Vessel Security Act of 2010

Today, there are nearly 200 cruise vessels worldwide. On average, a cruise ship vessel carries 2,000 passengers and around 950 crewmembers. In the year of 2007, around 12,000,000 people worldwide were projected to embark on a cruise. While on a cruise, passengers are particularly vulnerable to crime. Those who are victimized on a cruise often lack the ability to understand their legal rights and do not know whom they should contact.  

To aid these crime victims, the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2010 was signed into legislation by President Barack Obama. Per this Act, all cruise ship operators are required by federal law to file reports of all rape and sexual assault to the Federal Bureau of Investigations and the Department of Homeland Security. Cruise lines are also required to maintain and report all sex crimes. The Act also imposes other safety and security requirements on cruise ship vessels. This list includes, but is certainly not limited to, sharing room key access logs, providing surveillance video and even keeping a rape kit along with supply of antiviral medications to help prevent the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases.

Take Action if You are a Victim of a Crime on a Cruise Ship

Despite the existence of these safety measures, the laws governing cruise ships are complex and it is in your best interest to contact a knowledgeable and experienced Florida maritime lawyer at Gerson and Schwartz PA. Our attorneys are at the forefront of assisting cruise ship passenger including cruise ship crime victims across the United States. If you or a loved one has been the victim of a rape, sexual assault, or other violent crime on a cruise ship, contact our law firm for a FREE consultation.

450894208_f1a963aa17Last December, a Honduran man was arrested after allegedly fondling an 11-year-old girl aboard the Disney Magic cruise ship. The ship disembarked from Port Miami for a weekend long cruise. While aboard the ship, the girl told her parents that the man, 31-year-old Palma Ortega, had fondled her three times. If you or someone you love was the victim of sexual assault on a cruise ship, consider contacting a Miami Cruise Ship Sexual Assault Attorney.

Miami-Dade police are charging Ortega with three counts of lewd and lascivious molestation of a minor, and he is being held without bond. Upon detention, Ortega confessed to the crime. In the state of Florida, the lewd or lascivious molestation of a child under 12 is a felony punishable by 25 years to life in prison. The man is also on an immigration hold and may be subject to deportation.

It is not clear yet whether or not Ortega was a crewmember of the Disney cruise line, but regardless, the cruise ship company does not have the best track record of responding to sexual assaults by their crew members. In 2013, a similar event took place, where an 11-year-old girl was groped by a dining room employee on the Disney Dream cruise ship while the ship was docked at Port Canaveral. Local police could not arrest the man because Disney did not report the assault until the next day. Instead of receiving justice, the man was sent back to his home country of India.

Premise Liability Claims on Cruise Ships

The victim’s parents have a right to sue Disney Cruise Lines if the perpetrator was a crew member or if inadequate security led to the assault.

In 2010, President Obama signed into law the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act. The law requires cruise ship administrators to report all instances of sexual assaults and other violent crimes and implement safety measures to prevent these occurrences from happening. Now cruise ships are required to maintain video surveillance and keep rape kits onboard. Before this law, cruise ships could prevent police from accessing their ships for investigations and at times protected their crew members from punishments for their crimes.

Florida is the only state that allows jurisdiction for state police over sexual assaults that occur in international waters. State prosecutors also have the power to charge any passenger or crew member that commit these crimes. Other states usually have to defer the investigation to the FBI.

Contact a Miami Cruise Ship Sexual Assault Lawyer Today

If you or someone you loved was the victim of a sexual assault or rape aboard a cruise ship, do not hesitate to contact an attorney. At Gerson & Schwartz P.A. we have extensive experience going toe to toe with all the major cruise line companies and have an excellent track record of receiving favorable settlements. All our cases are conducted on a contingent fee so there are no attorney’s fees unless we recover money on your behalf. Contact us today for a free consultation.

file0001442567760While the exact details of the accident are still under investigation, what is clear is that a crew member died in a Carnival Ecstasy elevator while passengers caught glimpses of the gruesome scene. The ship was in the last legs of a Caribbean cruise departing from Miami when Florida residents Matt Davis and his wife were walking toward the elevator and noticed it was malfunctioning, only partly open and dripping with a copious amount of blood. When they alerted the cruise ship’s staff, they were told to leave the scene and enter the restaurant.

Miami-Dade police are currently investigating the freak accident that killed electrician Jose Sandoval Opazo, 66, of Liguria, Italy. Carnival Cruise Line has been reluctant to provide many details regarding the incident but do extend their support to the victim and his family. Witnesses of the accident say that crew members told them that Opazo was working either inside or behind the elevator when the elevator came down. If you were injured or lost a loved one aboard a cruise ship consider contacting a Miami Cruise Ship Accident Attorney.

Carnival Cruise Line has been fraught with controversy surrounding various catastrophic accidents in recent years. In 2012 the Costa Concordia capsized off the coast of Italy, killing 32 people. The cause of the accident was the hubris of the ship’s captain who intentionally steered the ship too close to shore. In 2013 the Carnival Triumph caught fire, which knocked out the ship’s power, leaving the cruise stranded for four days without working toilets.

Legal Recourse for Victim’s Family

A common misconception surrounding cruise ship injuries and wrongful death claims is that they fall under the same rules and laws as land-based accidents such as car crashes and premise liability claims. Unfortunately, this is not the case. Because these accidents happen at sea, they fall under maritime law and various requirements and restrictions apply to filing a lawsuit.

Cruise ship companies often insert various provisions into their tickets that set the rules for filing lawsuits. This often includes shortening the window available to file a lawsuit and requiring a written notice be sent to the cruise liner before a lawsuit can be filed. While cruise ship employees do not have to agree to these rules, they may have certain language in their contracts that may make it more difficult to litigate. Some cruise liners restrict the area in which a claim can be filed such as only allowing lawsuits to happen in Florida courts or even a foreign country. These restrictions are blatant attempts by cruise liners to inconvenience passengers out of filing a lawsuit.

Contact a Miami Cruise Ship Accident Attorney Today

If you were injured or lost a loved one aboard a cruise ship, do not hesitate to contact an experienced cruise ship accident attorney. At Gerson & Schwartz P.A. we have extensive experience going toe to toe with all the major cruise line companies and have an excellent track record of receiving favorable settlements. All our cases are conducted on a contingent fee so there are no attorney’s fees unless we recover money on your behalf. Contact us today for a free consultation.

cruise ship pool

While aboard a Royal Caribbean cruise ship, an 8-year-old boy drowned in one of the ship’s swimming pools. The ship named “The Liberty of the Seas” was traveling from Galveston, Texas to Cozumel, Mexico when the tragedy occurred. The child’s body was discovered by one of the passengers and removed from the pool. A member of the ship’s medical team performed CPR on the child for over an hour but was unsuccessful. If you were injured or lost a loved one in a cruise ship accident, consider contacting a Miami Cruise Ship Accident Attorney.

Despite the many risks involved with swimming children, most cruise lines do not have lifeguards stationed at their family pools. It is telling that in this situation a passenger and not a cruise ship employee had to be the one to first attempt to rescue the boy from the pool.

While signs are always posted to warn passengers to swim at their own risk, it makes you wonder if that is enough to protect children on cruises. Especially when you consider the scenario of a long cruise where there are many opportunities for a child to be separated from his or her parent and swim unsupervised, the lack of lifeguards is baffling.

Disney Cruise Line is the only major cruise ship company to have life guards stationed at all their family pools. Unfortunately it took the near drowning of a child in May 2013 in the pool aboard a Disney Fantasy Cruise Ship to implement this policy. Although he was saved, the incident left him with severe brain damage and he is still undergoing physical therapy.

According to Cruise Lines International Association, 1.5 million children are aboard cruise ships each year. Despite some larger cruise ships having as many as 1,000 employees, placing a few lifeguards where children swim is still not a priority for some cruise liners. The three biggest cruise ship companies, Royal Caribbean, Norwegian Cruise Line, and Carnival Cruise Line do not have any lifeguards.

This is not even the first child to drown aboard a Royal Caribbean Cruise this year. A 4-year-old boy drowned in a pool on Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas ship after he wandered away from his parents. The ship had departed from Fort Everglade, Florida and like in the recent drowning, a passenger pulled the boy out of the water and not a crew member.

Contact a Miami Cruise Ship Accident Attorney Today

If you were injured or lost a loved one aboard a cruise ship, do not hesitate to contact an experienced cruise ship accident attorney. At Gerson & Schwartz P.A. we have extensive experience fighting with the major cruise line companies and getting our clients the restitutions they deserve. Whether it is a minor slip and fall or an enormous tragedy such as a wrongful death, we will help ensure that large cruise ship corporations do not get away with negligence. All our cases are conducted on a contingent fee so there are no attorney’s fees unless we recover money on your behalf. Contact us today for a free consultation.

18 On Board the Alaska cruise May2015Cruise ship season has begun in Florida. As cruise ships leave the coasts of Europe and Alaska, seeking warmer waters in Florida and the Caribbean, many Americans are choosing cruise ships as the venue for their wintertime vacations. Cruise lines have been reporting increased numbers of bookings from last year, with Carnival Cruise Corp. boasting a 20% increase in early 2016 bookings from the previous year. With an increased number of Americans choosing to sail on cruise ships comes increased numbers of accidents that cruise ship companies could be liable for. If you were injured or lost a loved one aboard a cruise ship, contact an experienced Miami Cruise Ship Accident Attorney today.

Cruise Ship Season in Florida

Cruise ship season in Florida typically stretches from November until April. Americans suffering cold winters flock to Florida for reprieve from blizzards and subzero temperatures. 62% of all people who have left the US on a cruise ship has done so through a Florida port. With Hurricane season ending in October, the winter months are some of the safest times to travel the sea.

Florida is home to the three busiest cruise ship ports in the world – Port Miami, Port Canaveral near Orlando, and Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale. In the fiscal year of 2015, 2.54 million cruise ship passengers embarked from Port Miami, 1.76 million from Port Canaveral and 1.94 million from Port Everglades.

These numbers are only expected to increase in 2016. Due to an improving economy, more and more Americans are choosing the luxury of cruise travel and cruise lines are stepping up their marketing, hoping to reach the 70% of Americans who have never traveled on a cruise. These marketing campaigns are an attempt to convince people that cruise ship travel can be less expensive than typical land vacations. With every expense included, without the cost of airfare and other additional expenses, there certainly is an argument for the economy of a cruise vacation.

While cruise ship season means fun for most, sometimes these vacations can end in disaster. Slipping and falling on narrow stairways, crime aboard the ship, and various other dangers of the high seas may leave you wanting to file a lawsuit. But because of various stipulations that you agree to when becoming a cruise ship passenger, litigation can be more difficult against cruise ship companies than with most personal injury suits.

Contact an Experienced Cruise Ship Accident Attorney Today

Due to the complex nature of maritime law, an experienced South Florida Cruise Ship Accident Lawyer is crucial when seeking damages for an accident. At the Law Office of Gerson & Schwartz, P.A., we have a collective 80 years of fighting cases against all the major cruise line companies. Our law firm represents cruise ship passengers and crew members who are seriously injured in every type of incident including, missing persons, slip and fall, and victims of a crime aboard a ship. All our cases are conducted on a contingent fee so there are no attorney’s fees unless we recover money on your behalf. Contact us today for a free consultation.

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