Cruises have quickly become one of the most popular forms of vacationing. Each cruise is accompanied by its many activities to pick from and enjoy. For instance, several cruise lines offer whale watching. Whale watching is the practice of observing whales in their natural habitat. As with other vacationing activities, accidents tend to occur. One notable incident recently occurred. A 150-foot whale watching ship crashed into a wharf next to a downtown pier, injuring seven passengers and damaging the ship. There were 144 people onboard this ship. As it turns out, crewmembers reported that mechanical issues stuck the ship’s throttle in the forward position just prior to the ship’s crash. At the moment, the United States Coast Guard is investigating this accident.
This was certainly a horrific incident. If you or a loved one were injured on a cruise ship, you may be entitled to substantial compensation. It is imperative that you hire an experienced attorney for your case. The Miami maritime lawyers at Gerson & Schwartz PA are here to help. Our attorneys are experienced in filing claims against all major cruise lines. We know how to aggressively handle maritime lawsuits. We will fight hard to enforce your legal rights and we will not hesitate to bring your case to trial if a fair settlement offer is not made.
If an Accident Occurs
Say, for instance, you are enjoying a cruise vacation when, suddenly, you are involved in an accident at the fault of the cruise line. Suppose it is an accident similar to the one above where the cruise ship itself crashes into a pier. If you file a claim, you are more than likely going to trial. Studies show that cruise lines hesitate to settle cases.
Therefore, it is important to know and understand how to win your case in court. If your cruise ship crashes, for instance, the suit will most likely be brought on negligence grounds. A negligence lawsuit requires the showing of four key elements. First off, you, the injured passenger (“Plaintiff”) must prove that the cruise line (“Defendant”) owed you a duty of care. This is easy to establish. If you are a passenger on a cruise ship, the cruise line owes you a reasonable duty of care. The cruise line must take reasonable steps to ensure your safety. Second, you must show that the cruise line breached said duty of care. For this element, simply by showing that the cruise line or crewmembers were at fault in creating the accident, this will establish breach. As in the accident discussed above, if you can show, perhaps with an expert witness, that the ship’s throttle was not reasonably maintained per normal procedure, this will establish a breach of the duty of care.
Once duty and breach are proven, you or your lawyer must then show that the breach actually and proximately caused your injury. Finally, you must be able to show your injury or injuries.
Hire an Attorney for Your Case
The maritime personal injury attorneys at Gerson & Schwartz, PA have more than 80 years of combined experience handling a variety of accident, injury, wrongful death claims including claims for missing persons. Our attorneys are licensed to practice law in all Florida state and federal courts. Our Florida law offices are located in Miami, Florida near the port of Miami and Port Everglades in Fort Lauderdale. We will not charge you for your case unless we recover money on your behalf. Contact us today for a FREE consultation. Se Habla Espanol.