MIAMI, FL—September 15, 2011 – A cruise ship passenger, whom other vacationers described as a “pleasant elderly British gentleman,” was reported missing from the cruise vessel Balmoral on September 12. The missing passenger was last seen aboard the Fred Olsen Cruise Lines-operated ship on the night of September 11, as it traveled from Stavanger, Norway to its final destination in Southampton, England, the Daily Mail reported.
According to information provided the Daily Mail, a cabin stewardess aboard the UK cruise ship Balmoral reported finding a note suggesting that a passenger may have gone missing on 9/11. It was only after ship crew members carried out a full onboard search to no avail and the cruise liner docked in Southampton that passengers were informed that they would only be permitted to disembark following preliminary missing persons investigations by police officials.
“We were only told what had happened when we arrived in Southampton. It was a very upsetting thing to hear. We had had a fantastic holiday and were just about to disembark and return home when we suddenly were told someone had disappeared… Everyone was shocked. No one knew that it had happened, even though we had been on the ship for more than 36 hours with him missing. It is the sort of thing you read about or see on TV,” an unidentified cruise ship passenger told reporters.
Authorities reportedly boarded the 700-foot Balmoral cruise ship in Southampton and approximately three hours passed before more than 1,000 passengers were given the OK to get off the ship. While authorities did not state if they suspected that the missing elderly man fell overboard, accentually or deliberately, investigations were ongoing.
Statistics provided by the International Cruise Victims Association suggested there have been 165 cruise ship disappearances since 1995. Excluding this particular missing persons case, 12 victims have disappeared at sea since the beginning of the year 2011.
About the Miami cruise ship injury lawyers and boat accident attorneys of Gerson & Schwartz, P.A.
With four decades of experience litigating the multifaceted personal injury and wrongful death claims of boat and cruise line passengers who are hurt or assaulted onboard, the knowledgeable Florida boating accident lawyers of Gerson & Schwartz are dedicated to protecting the rights of these individuals and fighting to provide them with the compensation they deserve. Working closely with the National Center for Victims of Crime, the Miami personal injury attorneys of Gerson & Schwartz, P.A. strive to provide justice to individuals who suffer serious injuries in a wide variety of boating accidents.