What Happens When Miami Cruise Ships Lose Power?

It was a horrific scene in late March when a shipping container ship lost power in Baltimore, leading to a fatal collision and collapse of the Francis Scott Key BridgeA similar incident occurred in Sydney Harbour, Australia, in February 2024 only the accident involved a cruise ship carrying hundreds of passengers. Unfortunately, it is quite common for cruise liners to lose power and become disabled. In many cases, the problems are resolved with assistance from land crews, tug boats, or other support. 

However, the potential for serious accidents increases when cruise ships do not have power for essential systems. There are implications for the entire ship and operations, and these effects trickle down into hazards for unsuspecting passengers. It is crucial to discuss your legal remedies with a Miami cruise ship accident lawyer if you were hurt because of lost power on board. Some additional information about what happens in these situations is also useful.

Impacts on Ship Operations

Depending on the cause and details of a blackout onboard the vessel, there are many functions and features that may be affected. You can expect that most hospitality, water attractions, shows, and other amenities will be unavailable or inaccessible. However, the overall effects on the ship are considerable from an operations standpoint:

  • The captain and crew may lose instruments, leading to limitations in navigation.
  • A loss of power could include disconnection from communications with land and other ships.
  • The timing of a blackout might mean passengers on land for shore excursions could be stranded.

Effects on Individual Passengers

On a personal level, each individual on the cruise ship may suffer the consequences of a power loss on the vessel. You could be confined to your room and be unable to enjoy the activities you expected for your vacation. Plus, a blackout increases the likelihood of:

  • Burns due to electrocution from malfunctioning equipment;
  • Injuries from falls when there are no lights and visibility is reduced; and,
  • Exposure to disease and bacterial related to failure of sanitation systems, which require power to function;

Claims for Cruise Ship Injuries

Whether from a blackout or other accident, passengers do have legal remedies if they suffer harm while on board. You may also have rights if you were injured during a shore excursion or while embarking and disembarking in the terminal. The deadline to file a claim with the cruise operator is short, usually around six months compared to the two-year statute of limitations in Florida. You may qualify to recover:

  • Medical expenses;
  • Lost income;
  • Pain and suffering; and,
  • Many other types of damages.

Reach Out to a Miami Cruise Ship Accidents Attorney to Learn More

You do have rights if you were hurt or lost a loved one in a cruise ship mishap, whether the injuries were due to lost power or other negligent acts. For details about your legal options, please contact Gerson & Schwartz, PA. We can set up a free case evaluation at our offices in Miami, Fort Lauderdale, or West Palm Beach, FL.

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