Boating Accidents, Cruise Ship Law

Disney Dream Cruise Ship Saves Two Stranded Boaters


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Lipcon, Margulies, Alsina & 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.

Although tragedy has stricken the cruise industry several times in the past year, it seems as though the 2013 cruise season has begun on a positive note. Just a few days before a French yachtsman was rescued by the crew of the MV Orion vessel, two boaters in the Bahamas were rescued by a Disney Cruises ship.

According to Disney officials, the Disney Dream rescued two U.S. citizens from a small vessel in the Bahamas on Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, after responding to the victims’ distress call. After receiving a call that a vessel was stranded out at sea, the Dream, which was sailing between Florida and the Bahamas, immediately responded to help the victims.

The ship notified the Coast Guard and launched a rescue boat out to sea to bring the boaters onboard the vessel. The victims were then taken to the Dream’s medical quarters, where they were examined for any injuries and later given food and water.
While this was certainly a heroic act, more times than not it is cruise lines that are taking the blame for injuries to passengers and crewmembers. While cruise lawyers are often needed to defend the rights of victims, it is refreshing to see a cruise line go out of its way to help a victim in distress, especially when the victim is not even onboard the vessel.

“We are proud of our Disney Dream crewmembers, who skillfully demonstrated their training and commitment to maritime protocols around saving lives at sea,” said a Disney spokesperson in a statement Friday.

The ship and the rescued boaters arrived at Port Canaveral the following day. No word on what exactly caused their accident.

A passenger on the Dream with his wife and son, recounted the rescue mission and explained that the cruise was on the final day of the itinerary when the captain alerted passengers about the distress signal via intercom. His family, along with other passengers and crewmembers, headed up to the Lido deck to watch the rescue mission.

“It was obvious that the boat was in trouble, sitting dead in the water,” recounted the passenger. “Some speculated that it had run out of gas. It was apparent that there were no major medical issues.”

After the rescue team came back to the Dream with the boaters, the cruise passengers “reacted with a roar of approval, clapping their hands for several minutes.”

The passenger, who also happens to be a U.S. Navy veteran, was pleased with the way the Dream’s crewmembers reacted and said it was a good learning experience for his 10-year-old son.

It seems as though Disney is willing to go the extra mile to make someone’s day, whether onboard one if its Disney cruise ships, at one of its many theme parks, or in this case, by rescuing victims who needed help. Mickey – and all of the cruise lawyers at Lipcon, Margulies, Alsina & Winkleman, P.A. – are very pleased.

Photo Credit: Dan Tressler, II, via the Orlando Sentinel

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