Passenger Sues Cruise Line After Being Injured by Champagne Cork

The popping sound of a champagne cork disengaging from a bottle is the go-to file in the sound effects library when you want to indicate a festive atmosphere. The sight, sound, and smell of the spray of bubbles from a newly uncorked bottle of champagne evoke nostalgia for leisurely, convivial nights in much the way that the sight, sound, and smell of the sea foam make you nostalgic for leisurely days. 

Uncorking a champagne bottle at a party that you host in your own house is a rite of passage. There is always that fear that the cork will go rogue and damage the furniture that you spent so much money on in preparation for your housewarming party. When you buy a bottle of champagne in a restaurant, at least you can be sure that the restaurant server who is opening the bottle knows what they are doing. 

Most people have an instinctive fear of getting hit in the eye by a champagne cork because it can fly out of the bottle at 30 miles per hour; our reflex is to stand back. A champagne cork to the eye falls under the category of freak accidents, and a cruise ship is the last place anyone would expect it to happen. If you have been injured in a freak accident on a cruise ship, contact a Miami cruise ship accident lawyer.

A Champagne Cork to the Eye is Bad Enough on Dry Land

In January 2023, Robert Marchetta boarded the Celebrity Edge cruise ship in Fort Lauderdale and set out for an 11-night tour of the southern Caribbean. After visiting Aruba, Curacao, and other Caribbean islands, the ship made its way back to Fort Lauderdale. On the evening of February 2, Marchetta was in the ship’s dining room; he suffered a serious eye injury when a champagne cork struck him in the face at high speed. 

According to Marcheta’s lawsuit, the champagne cork hit his right eye after bursting through a “wire cage.” Based on this description, it is not clear how the accident occurred. Was it a wire cage on top of the bottle, and did the accident happen while a cruise ship employee was uncorking the bottle? Was the champagne bottle in a cabinet, and did it uncork spontaneously? It is possible for champagne bottles to uncork spontaneously if they are stored at low temperatures, so restaurants and cruise ships must ensure proper storage to prevent injury.

According to premises liability laws, passengers who get injured on cruise ships have the right to sue the cruise line and collect damages for accident-related medical bills and other accident-related financial losses. Marchetta has sued Celebrity Cruises and is requesting at least $75,000 in damages.

Contact Gerson & Schwartz About Personal Injury Cases

A cruise ship accident lawyer can help you file a premises liability claim if you suffered a preventable injury on a cruise ship. Contact Gerson & Schwartz in Miami, Florida, to discuss your case.

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