With modern day technology, the cruise ship companies believe they can outmaneuver mother nature, and believe that the fear created by encountering rough seas and rough weather, as well as the unpleasantness and dangers that can result, is not enough to cancel a cruise. I have written many times about cruise ship companies deciding that their mega cruise ships are capable of withstanding storms, and their reluctance to cancel cruises, resulting in passengers being endangered when cruise ships are driven into severe weather, including tropical storms and even hurricanes.
I also have also written about the Anthem of the Seas, a Royal Caribbean cruise ship, too many times this year. This includes its decision to navigate into a storm this past February. For some reason Anthem of the Seas had not learned from its mistakes, and again, the ship decided to not to cancel its itinerary despite Tropical Storm Hermine warnings.
Often times, severe weather causes dishes, plates, furniture, and other items to fly across areas on the ship, creating dangers to passengers and crew. Of course, seasickness is also common during encounters with rough weather. There is also the danger of the ship losing power during a storm, and being at the mercy of strong season winds. In extreme cases, ships have sunk during hurricanes because a ship-owner decided to take a chance and outmaneuver a storm as was in the case of El Faro.
In this particular case, it appears the Anthem of the Seas was able to plow through these rough seas, and get to its destination in a timely fashion. This is always the goal of the cruise ship company, to timely get to their destination, without losing any money due to delays, cancellations, or extra fuel costs. However, this does not mean that the ride was anything close to pleasant. This past Sunday, for a period of 3 hours, guest on board the Anthem of the Seas experienced very rocky conditions as a result of Tropical Storm Hermine as it sailed toward Bermuda. According to reports, dishes were flying across the restaurants and many guests experienced seasickness. The water was so rough that passengers had to use handrails to get around during this time.
Many accidents on cruise ships do occur during storms, and there may be legal liability on the part of the cruise ship company to their passengers for these injuries. Under the maritime law, cruise ship companies owe a duty to exercise reasonable care for the safety of the passengers. A breach of this duty that causes harm can result in legal liability for the damages. If you have been injured or harmed on a cruise ship during a storm, you should contact a maritime attorney to determine whether you have a potential claim for negligence against the cruise ship company.
Our firm continues to act as safety advocates for those injured or harmed at sea. We have handled many cases involving injuries and deaths as a direct result of negligence of the cruise lines. Call us today for a free consultation.