Archive for November 17th, 2010

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Look Closely At On Shore Excursions From Cruise Ships

November 17, 2010

Another example of the dangers of taking a cruise played out this week in Basseterre, St. Kitts.  Two masked gunmen robbed a group of 16 passengers taking an on shore excursion from the Celebrity Mercury cruise ship.   The incident highlights the dangers of taking an on-shore excursion while visiting foreign ports on a cruise ship.

With an estimated population 15,500, Basseterre is the capital of the Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis in the West Indies, a popular cruise ship destination.  Geographically, the port is located on the southwestern coast of Saint Kitts Island, and is one of the chief commercial ports of the Leeward Island.

The group of 16 cruise passengers were taking a tour bus to the Brimstone Hill Fortress, a popular cruise ship excursion.  The gunmen blocked the road with a fallen tree.  While the St. Kitts police have referred to the incident as an isolated incident, the dangers of taking an on shore cruise ship excursion are well known.

Earlier this year, it was reported that nine Portuguese tourists from a Classic International cruise ship were killed and 14 injured when their tour bus plunged into a ravine in northern Morocco. Eight of the dead in the accident near the border with the Spanish enclave of Cueta were female, including a teenager, when the bus skidded into a ravine due to fog and rain.

In May 2010, a passenger from the Carnival Pride cruise ship died during an on shore diving excursion.  While it was reported that the dive was supposed to be an easy dive, several passengers including the woman that died, became overwhelmed with strong currents and had difficulty getting back to the ship.

Cruise ship accident attorney Joseph M. Maus says cruise ship passengers need to look closely at ticket limitations before deciding to go on an on-shore excursion.  The ticket contract for many cruise ships specifically disclaims any responsibility for the on-shore excursions as they are run by “independent contractors”.  While the cruise ship passengers may think they are simply going on a cruise ship sponsored event, with all the protections and safety of the cruise ship, this is definitely not the case.  Many people injured during an on-shore cruise ship excursion are left to deal with a complex maze of foreign jurisdiction and laws.

For more information about the laws governing cruise ship accident and injury claims, contact the Maus Law Firm at (866) 556-5529 or log on to www.mauslawfirm.com

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