Many tourists regularly visit Florida every year in order to enjoy the sunshine and warm tropical weather. In addition, many cruise ships depart from Florida on a daily basis headed for other exotic tropical destinations. When people come on board a cruise ship, they usually do so in hopes of relaxing, unwinding, and escaping their everyday lives and problems. However, accidents and personal injuries sometimes occur while on board a cruise ship. When that happens, the cruise ship or cruise line may be responsible for the injuries and damages sustained while on board.
If you have sustained injuries while on board a cruise ship, it is important that you seek emergency medical care and treatment for your injuries as soon as possible. If you fail to do so, the ship’s insurance company may later try to claim that you were not actually seriously injured in the accident – or that you were not even injured at all. Moreover, after the cruise, when you arrive home, it is important that you promptly follow up with your primary care doctor or other health care provider who can offer you the ongoing medical care and treatment that you need to get better.
In every personal injury case, no matter the circumstance, it quickly becomes apparent that the insurance companies aren’t in the business of efficiently compensating accident victims for their injuries and damages. The same is true in cruise accident cases. Cruise companies have large insurance companies with experienced lawyers on their side advocating for them. Likewise, you should have an experienced personal injury lawyer on your side advocating for your legal interests.
If you or a loved one has sustained injuries in a cruise ship accident, you should retain legal counsel to review your case soon as possible. The Clearwater personal injury lawyers at Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA are experienced negotiators and litigators who can advocate for you and take on the insurance company. Our knowledgeable team of lawyers can answer all of your legal questions and help to develop a plan for maximizing your settlement or verdict awarding you compensation for your injuries.
Common Causes of Injuries While on Board Cruise Ships
The types of accidents and injuries which may occur while on board a cruise ship are potentially limitless. These injuries are sometimes relatively minor soft tissue injuries which may require very little – if any – medical follow-up or treatment. However, in other cases, the injuries sustained may be much more serious. Some of the most common causes of injuries sustained while on board a cruise ship include:
- Wet floors and other slippery surfaces
- Defective staircases and railings
- Unlit or poorly lit hallways and common areas
- Poorly mainly maintained flooring
- Defective equipment or appliances in staterooms
- Other cruise ship patrons
- Poor supervision at swimming pools, in common areas, or during children’s activities on board
- Poorly maintained swimming areas or recreation facilities on board
Potential Cruise Line Liability
In cases of injuries sustained while on board cruise ships, the cruise ship or cruise line may share in some or all of the blame. In order to prove that the cruise line was negligent, the accident victim will need to prove certain negligence elements. Those legal elements include duty, breach, causation, and damages.
As far as proving the duty element, the accident victim will need to show that the cruise line owed a duty of care. This legal duty consists of properly maintaining and watching over the premises for the benefit of all cruise ship patrons. When cruise ship personnel fail to do so, and accidents and injuries occur, then the cruise line may be liable.
When it comes to defects on the cruise ship, cruise ship personnel have a duty to warn of any known dangerous conditions on board and to inspect the premises for unknown hazards.
If the accident victim can show that the cruise line violated the applicable standard of care, then he or she must also be able to prove injuries and damages. Specifically, the accident victim must causally relate all of the claimed injuries and damages directly to the cruise ship accident.
Steps to Take Following a Cruise Ship Accident
After being involved in an accident while on board a cruise ship, there are certain steps you should take to safeguard your rights to legal and monetary recovery. By actively taking these steps, you can help to minimize the stress and inconvenience associated with sustaining injuries while on your vacation:
- Notify the ship’s staff that you have been injured
- Tell the ship’s medic or on-call doctor about all of your injuries, symptoms, and pain
- Be specific about all of your injuries and pain levels
- Follow through with medical treatment when you return home – particularly with a primary care doctor
- Follow-through with all treatment recommendations provided by the ship’s medic or on-call doctor
- Complete all medical treatment and do not self-discharge from any treatment facility at any time
- Continue treating your injuries and avoid any significant gaps in medical treatment or physical therapy
- Contact a Clearwater personal injury lawyer who can address all of your legal questions and concerns
Call a Clearwater Personal Injury Lawyer Today to Discuss Your Accident and How It Occurred
Accidents and injuries sustained while on board a cruise ship have the potential to ruin an otherwise pleasant vacation. If you have been injured when you were on board a cruise ship and believe that the cruise line may be fully or partially to blame, you should contact a personal injury attorney about your accident as soon as possible.
The knowledgeable Clearwater personal injury lawyers at Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA can evaluate your case and may be able to represent you. Our skilled attorneys can help you recover just compensation for the injuries you sustained, while you focus on your physical recovery.
To set up a free consultation and case evaluation with a Clearwater personal injury lawyer, please call us at 727-451-6900, or contact us online.
Sibley Dolman Gipe Accident Injury Lawyers, PA
800 North Belcher Road
Clearwater, FL 33756