Last week, our cruise ship accident attorneys were devastated with the news of the drowning of a 4-year-old boy and the near-drowning of his 6-year-old brother aboard the Norwegian Breakaway. Not many details were revealed regarding these two tragic accidents, especially because the victims are minors and, by law, any information regarding their names, circumstances of the accident, and other specific details are at the parents’ discretion to reveal. However, a cruise passenger who was on the same itinerary has spoken out regarding the tragedy.
Kelly Eastwood, 41, was relaxing at the Breakaway’s pool area with her husband and 8-year-old son when the drowning accident took place.
“I looked up and I heard screams and everybody was looking around the pool,” said Eastwood to 1010 WINS reporters.
Eastwood, who is trained in CPR, ran over to the boys and, along with other passengers, tried to resuscitate the young victims until a nurse and medic arrived on the scene. Eastwood explains she was working on the older boy before the other specialists arrived. She did not explain whether the nurse or medic were crew members or fellow passengers who had medical training.
Perhaps the most shocking of Eastwood’s revelations came when she admitted to reporters that it took the nurse and medic around seven minutes to arrive on scene. By this time, the boys had already been pulled out of the water and other passengers were trying to do their best to save them.
Eastwood was left astounded at the crew’s delayed response time to save the children. She explained that there were no lifeguards, and none of the other crew members near the scene knew how to perform CPR. Moreover, none of them, allegedly, even rushed over to help the victims.
Interesting to note, especially after Norwegian issued a statement claiming: “All of Norwegian Cruise Line’s crew members are trained in first aid which includes CPR.”
So then, what stopped any crew member – or even a bartender which we know there are plenty of – from even attempting to help the boys? It would make sense that anyone who is trained in first aid or CPR would rush to help, especially a crew member. Was it because they were afraid that by participating, they may be held liable for the death? Is that why they avoided doing anything at all?
Eastwood believes that perhaps the younger boy could have been saved if a crew member would have at least tried their best to offer assistance. Unfortunately, Eastwood’s recounts are nothing we haven’t heard before here at Lipcon, Margulies, Alsina & Winkleman, P.A.
So why is it that the vast majority of cruise lines do NOT carry lifeguards at the pools? Read on and find out.
Sadly, this isn’t the first – nor the last – time a tragic accident has occurred on a cruise line. It is not the first time crew members have failed to properly react in the event of an emergency. And it is definitely not the first time cruise lines have been accused of failing to train their crew. We’ll explore these concepts in greater detail in Part 2 of this blog.