Maritime Matter of the Week

Carnival Cruises Change Itinerary in the Caribbean Due to Tropical Storm Don


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Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. is comprised of attorneys that are nationally-recognized industry leaders in the field of maritime and admiralty law. Our team of lawyers has over a century of combined experience, has successfully handled over 3,000 cases, and has recovered over 300 million dollars in damages for our clients.

It is easy to see why so many people enjoy taking a cruise vacation. After all, where else can you experience the best of what the land at sea have to offer, with little to no travel stress? Because you are freed from the responsibility of making plans, you can sit back, relax and just enjoy your time away; and isn’t that what everyone is hoping to do on their vacation?

We understand exactly how stressed and overworked you may be feeling. As a result, your cruise should be a place of fun and relaxation. And although many cruises do go off without a hitch, it is important to remember that this is not always the case.

Dangerous Weather Can Be Unexpected

There are situations–typically ones out of your control–that can threaten to upset a perfectly enjoyable time at sea. Unexpected weather forecasts, for example, can take you and your cruise by surprise. After all, there is no way to know what the forecast will hold when you book your cruise months in advance. So, if and when dangerous sailing conditions strike, your cruise itinerary may suffer a few cuts. A recent story out of the Caribbean reminds us of this.

This week, Tropical Storm Don picked up in the Atlantic Ocean. The storm, which has sustained speeds of 40 miles per hour, prompted Tropical Storm Warnings for Grenada, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, as well as a Tropical Storm Watch for Bonaire. According to the National Hurricane Center, Trinidad and Tobago as well as Aruba and Curacao should also be on alert as the storm progresses.

With these warnings in effect, a few cruises sailing in the Caribbean have made changes to their itineraries. Carnival Vista will make stops in San Juan and St. Maarten, instead of Aruba and Curacao, respectively. Meanwhile, Carnival Magic will skip Curacao, spending a day at sea instead, and replacing the stop with a later day in Amber Cove.

No other cruise itineraries have been modified and the latest reports reveal that Don is unlikely to impact Florida, or any region of the United States.

When It Comes to the Weather, Better Safe Than Sorry

Although it can be a hassle and a disappointment to discover that your cruise has changed its itinerary due to a storm, it is always better for the cruise line to take the safer route in order to keep passengers and crewmembers out of harm’s way. In the past, there have been terrifying and highly risky incidents wherein cruise lines ignored weather reports and sailed directly into a storm. This increases the risk of accident, injury, and even death aboard a cruise–which is something we would all like to avoid.

So, while this situation appears to be well addressed, we know that this is not always the case. If you have been on a cruise ship that has sailed into a storm, and you have suffered physical or emotional harm as a result, you should know that we are here to help. It can be difficult to carry the weight of your legal burden on your own. Fortunately, you do not have to. The maritime lawyers at Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. are here to help.

We have assisted countless clients with their cruise ship accident claims and we are ready to do the same for you. So when you are prepared to take the next step forward and leave the burden of this incident in the past, do not hesitate to contact us.

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