Pre-paid beverage plans offered by most of the major cruise lines could be putting profits ahead of passenger safety. These plans, which offer unlimited alcoholic beverages to passengers for a set price, encourage passengers to drink more than they would if they paid for each drink individually. If you were injured or lost a loved one due to the negligence of cruise line companies, contact an experienced Miami Cruise Ship Accident Attorney today.
Cruise ships inherently possess greater dangers than most bars and common drinking establishments. Slippery surfaces, narrow staircases and the ever present perils of the high seas can lead to serious injuries and even death especially when coupled with heavy alcohol consumption.
In the last few months alcohol was a contributing factor in at least one cruise ship death. On a Royal Caribbean cruise that disembarked from Miami, an intoxicated man involved in an argument with cruise ship employees fell off the side of the ship onto a lifeboat and later into the sea. The man was never found, even after extensive search and rescue efforts by the coast guard.
Beverage Plans on Major Cruise Lines
Most major cruise ships offer some form of a prepaid alcoholic beverage plan, many of which offer more drinks than a passenger can responsibly drink. For $49.95 a day plus tips, Carnival Cruise Lines Cheers Program offers passengers up to 15 drinks a day. Even if spaced out throughout an entire day, 15 drinks can leave a cruise patron severely intoxicated and put them at increased risk of injury. Not to mention high alcohol consumption can lead to fights and arguments between passengers and crew members, creating an unsafe atmosphere for everyone.
Royal Caribbean Cruise Line offers an unlimited alcohol package that includes spirits for up to $67 per day, gratuity included. Celebrity Cruise Lines offers a similar package for $65 a day plus tips. Norwegian Cruise Lines has even going as far as offering a free unlimited beverage package for all cruises booked after January 1st 2016.
Legal Rights if You Get Hurt or Lose a Loved One Aboard a Cruise Ship
Cruise ship injuries and wrongful death claims do not fall under the same rules and laws as accidents that happen on land like car crashes and slip and fall claims. 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 certain rules and restrictions for filing lawsuits. This can 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. 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.
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. 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.