While vacationers hope for sunny skies when embarking on a cruise, hot weather can cause numerous hazards for passengers onboard a ship. Recently, one South Florida couple alleged that Norwegian Cruise Lines (Norwegian) failed to account for the dangers posed by the sun and failed to adequately warn its passengers of the dangers posed by the heat, causing a serious injury. If you were similarly injured on a cruise ship, our experienced Miami cruise ship attorneys can help you recover compensation for your injuries.
Did Cruise Line Fail to Warn Passengers?
In July of 2016, Arturo O. Ynigo and his wife, Marison Martinez Ynigo, were sailing on a Norwegian ship when Mr. Ynigo decided to go swimming. After getting out of the pool, he soon discovered that the deck in the pool area was extremely hot. By the time he was able to put on his footwear, Mr. Ynigo’s feet had been badly injured. Mr. Ynigo sought medical treatment, and was diagnosed with second-degree burns on the bottom of his feet. The Ynigos claim that they were not warned that the deck near the pool area was hot enough to cause such an injury.
On January 20, 2017, Mr. Ynigo and his wife filed a civil lawsuit against Norwegian, alleging that the cruise line had committed negligence by failing to warn passengers about the dangers posed by the deck around the pool. The couple is seeking damages for their injuries and have requested a jury trial.
Negligence and Failure to Warn
At first, it may seem obvious that a pool deck would heat up on a warm and sunny day. However, second-degree burns are not a trivial injury, and the extent of Mr. Ynigo’s burns indicates that Norwegian may not have fully protected its passengers from danger. Second-degree burns require sustained heat at least 131 degrees Fahrenheit. These types of burns go through the second layer of the skin and can cause red or white splotches, swelling, blisters, scarring, and severe pain. When these burns occur on the soles of a person’s feet, it can be difficult to walk, stand, or participate in nearly any of a cruise ship passenger’s standard activities or excursions.
Cruise lines like Norwegian have a legal duty to protect their passengers from harm. This means that if it is reasonably foreseeable that a condition or situation could be hazardous to passengers, the cruise line has a responsibility to either correct the dangerous situation or warn passengers about the hazard. If the cruise line fails to warn its passengers about a dangerous condition, people who are injured by that condition can file a lawsuit seeking compensation for the harm caused.
To win this case, the Ynigos must prove that Norwegian knew or should have known that walking barefoot around the pool area could cause these types of burns, and that Norwegian failed to adequately protect or warn its passengers about that risk. If a jury finds that Norwegian should have taken protective measures, like adding warning signs around the pool area or installing heat-resistant deck materials, then the Ynigos may be entitled to compensation.
Help for Injured Cruise Ship Passengers
A cruise is supposed to be a relaxing, worry-free experience. Unfortunately, it is not uncommon for dangerous conditions aboard a ship to cause a serious or lifelong injury. If you were injured on a cruise ship due to someone else’s negligence or a hazardous or dangerous condition, the cruise ship accident lawyers at Gerson & Schwartz, P.A. can help. Schedule your free consultation and learn more about your legal rights by calling 877-475-2905 today.