Cruise Ship Breaks Free From Moorings, Crashes Into Hull of Nearby Vessel

Frayed rope about to breakNo matter where you’re going, or what time of year it happens to be, when you make the choice to go on a cruise, you’re probably expecting it to be smooth sailing. After all, there’s nothing better than having a few days to kick up your feet and let the concerns of your daily life drift away.

However, a cruise vacation is not without its own set of risks. Although you may be at sea, accident and injury are still a possibility. So it’s important that you make sure you’re fully prepared for whatever could come your way.

A recent story out of New Zealand reminds us that there are some situations for which you simply cannot be prepared.

On February 12th, 2017, the Seabourn Encore, a cruise ship operated by the US-based Seabourn company, broke free of its moorings and collided with another vessel berthed at Timaru port in New Zealand. The collision, apparently due to high winds at the time, caused damage to the hull of the other vessel.

Currently, the Transportation Accident Investigation Commission and Timaru’s Prime Port are carrying out investigations.

Thankfully, no passengers were injured in this accident and the crewmembers were cooperative with the investigative authorities. However, we know that this is not always the case.

All too often, we see innocent passengers and crewmembers injured as a result of cruise line negligence. And while the cruise line will certainly carry out its own internal investigation, we are glad to know that the proper authorities are investigating the incident.     We will follow this story to see what the investigation reveals, if anything.

This case is an excellent example of a situation that would be almost impossible for passengers to anticipate. So, what can you do to expect the unexpected?

Your Safety is a Top Priority

For starters, it’s a good idea to always keep your wits about you!  This may sound odd but for some reason some passengers seem to leave their common sense at the port.  Remember, you are on the high seas and while cruises are generally extremely safe, bad things can happen.  Thus, you need to be prepared.  For example, bringing basic emergency supplies and food is a terrific idea.

You should also consider doing some extra reading before you depart. There are certain things we think that every cruise passenger should know.  The more research you do beforehand, the more ready you’ll be to face whatever happens.  This includes understanding the basic layout and important locations in the ports which you will be visiting.

Finally, we recommend downloading our Free Cruise Lawyer App. It’s a simple way to keep you connected to a maritime lawyer while you’re at sea. After an incident occurs, the app allows you to document all relevant details, and even call our office, should you need additional support. Now, we’re never more than a phone call away.

So if you have questions about your legal situation and are ready to take the next step, do not hesitate to contact a maritime attorney, today.