1 Dead; 3 Hurt in Royal Caribbean Shore Excursion Accident

Lipcon, Marguiles, Alsina & Winkleman, P.A

Shore excursion accident lawyersYet another cruise ship shore excursion accident has occurred. Was tour operator safety to blame?

It was only a month ago that our shore excursion accident lawyers wrote about a serious tour bus crash Tortola. One would think that cruise lines would begin taking the necessary steps to prevent their guests from getting hurt during what should be a fun and, above all, safe tour. However, accidents continue to happen. Now, it appears as though yet another cruise excursion has led to injuries for passengers sailing aboard a Royal Caribbean vessel.

According to a post published on Royal Caribbean’s website, 21 cruise passengers sailing aboard the Independence of the Seas ship were involved in a serious shore excursion accident after their transportation vehicle suffered a traffic accident in Falmouth, Jamaica today.

A Royal Caribbean’s post explained that the passengers were on their way back to the ship after enjoying a shore excursion at the popular Dunn’s River Beach when the tour bus was involved in a four-vehicle collision. One passenger was killed in the traffic collision while three others were taken to a local hospital with injuries. The cruise line also stated that some of the ship’s crew members went to the hospital to offer their assistance. The cruise line has also asked readers to keep the victims in their thoughts and prayers.

But what exactly went wrong?

According to reports, the tour was a cruise-sponsored shore excursion. However, we still don’t know who was responsible for the accident. All that our shore excursion accident lawyers know thus far is that the bus crash took place on the Carey Park main road in Trelawny, a Cornwall County parish located in northwest Jamaica. An article by the Jamaica Observer provided additional information on the accident, explaining that a Toyota Corolla motor car, a Freightliner truck, and a Toyota Hiace van were also involved in the crash.

Unfortunately, this isn’t the first shore excursion accident to happen – and most likely won’t be the last.

The shore excursions cruise passengers can choose from are often run by operators who don’t always abide by the highest standards in safety. Many excursion operators don’t even have a proper license to conduct their tours, and may not even thoroughly inspect their vehicles or excursion equipment before usage. Bus drivers may try to rush in order to get to their tour site or back to the vessel on time, which can cause serious accidents. Plus, many of the roads that excursion buses travel on are steep and narrow, and just one wrong move can lead to a severe collision in which cruise passengers are injured, or worse, killed.

Though cruise lines may sponsor certain tours, they don’t always want to take responsibility for any shore excursion accidents that may occur. Cruise lines tend to shift blame away from themselves and claim that they don’t actually have any ties to the tour operators. So, when victims actually turn to the cruise lines for assistance in recovering compensation for their injuries or losses, they are often turned away.

Luckily, victims have another option – turning to an experienced cruise ship shore excursion lawyer for assistance. An attorney who specializes in cruise line tour accidents and injuries can help victims understand their legal options, and if they have a viable claim, can assist them in filing a case. If you or a loved one were involved in the tour bus crash in Jamaica, or any other shore excursion accident, contact our firm today for a free consultation to discuss your rights.

UPDATE (January 21, 2016): Since the posting of this blog, our maritime lawyers resolved a similar cruise ship shore excursion accident case involving several Royal Caribbean passengers who were hurt when their tour bus crashed in St. Maarten. We represented all of the passengers aboard the bus who were injured and made a successful, confidential recovery for each of them. You can read about the excursion accident details here.