Once again Carnival Cruise Lines finds itself in the news. This time two passengers were lost at sea off the coast of Australia after either falling or jumping off the Carnival Spirit. Evidently, the missing couple went overboard at approximately 9 PM off the coast of Australia.
The pair was part of a larger group of family and friends. It is believed they went missing from the balcony of their state room. Carnival Cruise Lines crew conducted a thorough search of the ship before declaring the couple lost at sea. Thereafter, the vessel circulated the area in an effort to find them in the ocean, but the pair was never located. The investigation is ongoing, and the Australian maritime safety authority is participating. The search area was approximately 120 square nautical miles. The carrier still holds hope that the couple can be found but acknowledges that with every hour the chances of finding them alive, or even at all, diminishes rapidly.
Sadly, a number of Carnival ships have involved tragedies lately. Industry insiders believe that many of these mishaps could have been avoided with better safety and maintenance. However, it is practically impossible to eliminate the chances of a person going overboard. Cruise passengers must use common sense and conduct themselves prudently aboard a ship.
There are many reasons why a person would go overboard. Consumption of alcohol is the primary reason, other folks have attempted suicide and a few have been the victims of crime. Sometimes these cases result in the cruise lines liability. However, the survivors must show that the cruise line breached its duty of care under the circumstances. Further, the matter is complicated by the Death on the High Seas Act. These types of cases can be very tricky and require a certain set of skills by the attorney representing the surviving spouse or family. Notwithstanding, every passenger should consider safety first.
If you have any questions about this cruise accident or one you may be involved with, feel free to contact me any time.