It’s been six days since a fire broke out in the Carnival Triumph’s engine room, crippling the vessel and leaving it adrift at sea. But now that the passengers have finally made it back to land, will they give positive reviews about the Triumph’s crew’s performance?
The Triumph was left without power or propulsion on Sunday, Feb. 10, following the fire. As small tug boats hauled the 101,000-ton vessel to safety, passengers recounted the nightmarish conditions they were forced to endure onboard. Only about 20 toilets were working on the entire vessel, and some guests even claimed they were given plastic bags to defecate in.
As the toilets continued to get even more backed up, sewage began to spew over onto the ship’s decks and cabins, creating a foul stench and the perfect breeding grounds for disease to spread across the vessel.
Provisions were also scarce, and for a cruise line known for its delicious meals, passengers were treated to culinary masterpiece sandwiches composed of cucumbers, onions and condiments.
Furthermore, due to the lack of electricity, the heat onboard the ship was so stifling that some passengers opted to sleep on deck as opposed to their own cabins.
While it is the understatement of the year that passengers onboard the Carnival Triumph had a miserable time on their cruise ship vacation, what exactly can be said about how the crewmembers treated guests?
Following the tragic deaths of 32 people on the Costa Concordia, a subsidiary of Carnival Corp., crewmembers were criticized for their lack of emergency situation experience, coordination and communication.
Cruise ship crewmembers have a duty to serve and protect passengers from any accidents or crimes onboard. If they fail to provide a safe environment to those onboard due to negligence, the cruise company may be found at least partially responsible for any ensuing injuries or medical complications experienced by victims.
So do the Carnival Triumph’s crewmembers pass or fail the competency test?
According to passengers, it’s a draw.
Some passengers, like Janie Esparza, said the conditions on the ship were “horrible.” Others, like Norma Reyes, went as far as to say “the hallways were toxic” and that she would never go on a Carnival cruise again.
“[The hallways were] full of urine” exclaimed Reyes. “It was horrible. If that ship caught on fire and they had not contained it where would we be? Floating in the ocean or dead.”
However, other guests were more forgiving of the situation and praised crewmembers for doing the best they could under such dire circumstances, working long hours and making sure travelers were as comfortable as the situation could permit.
“They did a good job of managing expectations,” said Carnival Triumph passenger Brett Klausman. “The information that trickled out was probably well thought out to kind of keep people safe and calm.”
“No power, no toilets, nothing. Nothing, I mean, it was disgusting, but the staff, they did such an amazing job,” said another guest, Joseph Alvarez. “And I give them so much props because they were amazing through it all. I mean, they worked their tails off to accommodate everybody’s needs.”
Whether the crew did in fact do their best or not is something that an experienced cruise accident attorney can better determine.
Our attorneys here at Lipcon, Margulies, Alsina & Winkleman, P.A. have represented thousands of passengers who have been hurt or become sick due to the negligence of cruise ship operators.
If you or someone you know was onboard the Carnival Triumph or another vessel in which injuries, crimes or medical complications were suffered, contact our Carnival Triumph Lawyers today to discuss your options in filing a case against the line.
Top Right: Triumph Passengers Sleep In Hallways Due To Sewage Overflowing – CNN.com
Middle Left: Triumph Passengers Told To Defecate In Plastic Bags – salon.com
Bottom Right: Triumph Passengers Set Up Tents On Deck – dailymail.co.uk