Cruise Ship Law

Will Royal Caribbean’s Latest Ship Offer Greater Safety or Greater Risks? An Offshore Injury Lawyer’s Opinion


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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.

Cruise deckThis Fall, Royal Caribbean will debut the newest ship on its line. The Quantum of the Seas, when it sets sail in the fall, will be the most technologically-advanced ship on the ocean. In most cases, Royal Caribbean seems to be utilizing new technology in order to keep passengers more secure. For each offshore injury lawyer at our firm, this is a definite victory for passenger safety. However, are these enhancements all they are cracked up to be?

Some of the amenities and features will clearly improve the passenger experience. Passengers will be able to scan their boarding documents prior to embarkation and their luggage will be tagged with radio devices to ensure that no luggage is lost. Apps for better onboard communication will also be available, making sure that passengers can schedule their spa and stay in touch with family while on the ship.

Cruise Planner and Royal iQ will allow passengers to schedule shore excursions and keep track of their vacation schedules in one convenient location. Patrons will also receive notifications in the case of scheduling conflicts. Passengers will also be able to communicate with each other while on board. This is excellent news for passenger safety. Family and friends will be more able to locate missing passengers, and be better able to report incidents. And, in the horrific event that a passenger ends up going overboard, family and friends can more quickly report these incidents as well.

One amenity that raises some safety eyebrows, however, is the presence of robot bartenders. Our offshore injury lawyer recently wrote about the dangers of Norwegian Cruise Line’s all-inclusive, all-you-can-drink promotion. While most people love to drink and relax aboard a cruise, drinking has led to many cruise ship accidents over the years.

Royal Caribbean’s Quantum of the Seas will feature a Bionic Bar, where passengers can order their drinks on tablets and watch as robots mix their drinks. We wonder how Royal Caribbean plans to enforce drinking age restrictions. Additionally, human bartenders can more readily gauge when a passenger is too drunk to be served. Will robot bartenders be able to determine when a passenger has had too much to drink?

While the Bionic Bar sounds like a high-tech idea out of the Jetsons, it doesn’t seem to be a win for passenger safety. Inebriated passengers also pose a risk to those passengers who have chosen not to drink. Passengers who are more intoxicated may be more likely to commit acts of violence. They may be prone to more accidents, involving themselves and other passengers, as well.

In the event an injury is sustained due to over-intoxication or any other cause, an offshore injury lawyer can assist passengers in discussing their rights and options when it comes to filing a claim. In most cases, cruise ships do not have the legal facilities or policing capacity to deal with these incidents in a timely and reasonable manner, leading passengers who have been injured to suffer complications due to lack of prompt medical attention.

While Royal Caribbean seems to be using technology to promote passenger safety, it seems that it should take some time to rethink some of its amenities for the sake of passenger safety, which should, in our opinion, involve the establishment of more expansive medical quarters onboard ships, among other options that directly relate to passenger safety.


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