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Causes of Cruise Ship Accidents

From 1979 to January 2014, a total of 55 cruise ships have been reported to have sunk while en route to their destination or port of call. Despite this, the cruise industry continues to grow, with more cruise liners being built and debuting every year and the annual number of travelers, from 2010 to 2013, always going above 15 million, 60% of them coming from the US.

Many travelers book their cruise holidays at least six to eight months ahead of schedule. This is primarily to avail of the great discounts and the many perks offered by cruise ships, besides the opportunity of getting to choose their preferred cabin.

Besides the great places travelers intend to visit, the mere experience of being aboard a cruise liner is an experience to long for already, granted that no untoward accident happens which can turn a blissful experience to a nightmarish one. And the problem with cruise ships is that, if something goes wrong, like being caught in a hurricane or sea storm, the passengers usually have nowhere else to go except to the confines of their cabin.

There are different types of disasters that cruise ships may be involved in, but those included in the top four, which have been identified by the Cruise Lines International Association are rouge waves, unfavorable weather conditions, cruise ship fires and collisions. Cruise ships colliding or crashing against icebergs, other vessels, piers, reefs and rocks has often resulted to wide gashes on the side or underside of liners, causing these to capsize and sink. Besides causing severe injuries to passengers, these type of sea tragedy, which has sank many ships for the last 20 years, has also been the cause of many passenger deaths.

Cruise companies are responsible for ensuring the safety of their liners. Thus, it is highly important that these companies make sure that every part of the ship is in good condition, besides being equipped with all the necessary facilities and equipment needed during emergencies plus having onboard a crew that is highly trained in handling emergency situations. Considering the possibility that cruise ship companies and operators have complied with the safety standards mandated by the maritime or admiralty law, there should be no more issues of mechanical failures that could lead to fire or sanitation problems that can cause infections to passengers; it is a sad fact, however, that both continue to be realities that negatively affect the credibility of the cruise industry, in general, and compliant companies, in particular.

Due to the conditions allowed by the maritime law in case of injury to passengers in the event of a cruise ship accident, having a knowledgeable and experienced maritime or admiralty lawyer to defend you would rather be necessary. This is because claims for damages by injured passengers will need to be filed only in states (and identified courts within such states) indicated at the back of the cruise ship passenger ticket. The time limit for filing a claim also needs to be observed by claimants, otherwise they may lose the chance of getting the compensation that they rightly deserve.

6 Responses to “Causes of Cruise Ship Accidents”

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