New York City Personal Injury Law Blog
Establishing Liability for a Passenger Injury Aboard a Cruise Ship
Posted on Oct 26, 2014 in Premises Liability
A person who has been injured aboard a cruise ship may be able to recover damages from the cruise line if they are able to prove that the cruise ship was negligent in some manner. In passenger injury lawsuits, just because someone suffered an accident aboard a cruise ship, that doesn’t mean that the cruise liner should be held accountable for the same. Negligence refers to the failure to act with reasonable care. This means that the plaintiff and their personal injury lawyer must be able to prove that the cruise line failed to
act with reasonable care, and that, due to the actions or inactions of the cruise line, the plaintiff was injured.
Negligence Aboard a Cruise Ship
Some cruise line injuries involve a trip or slip and fall. These could be:
- Slipping and falling on a deck
- falling down a staircase
- tripping over a threshold
Staircases are can be unsafe in many different ways. Sometimes it may be the fault of the person who fell, and at others, the cruise line may be liable. The following are some factors, among others, that might be responsible for slipping and falling down on the stairs of a cruise ship:
- lack of handrails
- foreign substances or water on the stairs
- poorly designed handrails
- handrails that curve away from the stairs at the bottom
- the height of each step is wrong and are of varying heights
- the steps are too shallow
A person who has fallen down the stairs in a cruise ship should not just automatically assume that it was an accident. They should hire the services of a personal injury lawyer who will in turn contact a safety expert or a naval architect to investigate and measure the stairs to check if they conform to safe ship design practices.
Slipping on the Deck
It is the duty of the cruise line to make sure that a deck is reasonably safe and to safeguard it against all reasonably potential hazards. A cruise line may be negligent for using a surface that gets slippery when wet in an area that is often wet, such as a hot tub or a pool. To be able to prove personal injury liability for a slippery floor accident, it takes a lot of investigation and gathering of evidence, that only a dedicated and solid personal injury lawyer might be able to do.
Tripping over Thresholds
There are many thresholds in the doorways of cruise ships. Though they are tripping hazards, international and federal law states that thresholds must be set up in order to keep the interior of a ship watertight. Cruise ships cannot be negligent for having thresholds as a design feature as they are mandatory. However, they can be negligent for not issuing their passengers with a proper warning of a threshold. If a person trips over a threshold where there are no warning signs or stickers on the wall, this may be constitute negligence.