Cruise Ship Injuries, Maritime Wrongful Death

Woman Falls To Her Death From Balcony Aboard Carnival Elation


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Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A. is made up of attorneys who are nationally recognized industry leaders in the field of maritime and admiralty law. Our team of cruise lawyers has well over two centuries of combined experience, has successfully handled over 3,000 cases, and has recovered over 300 million dollars in damages for our clients. Several of our attorneys have even been selected to “Best Lawyers” ® by US News & World Report every year as far back as 2016.

cruise ship at portLate last week, a woman died after falling from her cruise cabin’s 14th floor balcony onto the 11th floor deck below. The woman was traveling aboard the Carnival Elation as it made a four-day trip from Jacksonville to the Bahamas. At the time of the fall, the ship was near Freeport, Bahamas. According to reports, the fall, which was two full floors–Carnival ships do not have a 13th floor– sent blood everywhere.

A spokesman for Carnival Cruise Line, Vance Gulliksen, confirmed the death on Saturday, January 20th. According to Gulliksen, the balconies on all Carnival ships do meet the standards required by the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act.

In a quote to the press, he said, “The ship’s medical team responded immediately, but, unfortunately, she passed away.” He went on to express condolences on behalf of the cruise line to the deceased and her family.

Law enforcement officials were called in immediately, requiring passengers to remain in their cabins until the initial investigation was complete. Eventually, passengers were permitted to disembark in Freeport. However, at this time, the name of the deceased has not been released, and the cause of the fall is not yet determined.

We send our deepest condolences to the family of the deceased as they navigate this challenging time.

Cruise Deaths Can Be Prevented

Unfortunately, in the wake of this accident, we are reminded of the fact that cruise ship overboard cases or falls over balconies are more common than anyone would like. Just a few months ago last fall, an eight year old girl from the Bahamas fell to her death on the Carnival Glory. Her fall raised questions about the safety of rail heights and the protection of young passengers aboard cruises.

In terms of adult deaths at sea, we have found that many cases involve the over-consumption of alcohol. Often, cruise lines continue to serve passengers alcoholic beverages long after it is clear that the passenger has had too much.  This is incredibly dangerous, as it puts the passenger at risk for making decisions that could ultimately harm themselves or other passengers.  However, since the cruise line is often more concerned about their bottom line, they frequently continue to allow inebriated passengers to purchase drinks, even when they should draw the line.

Even when the cruise line knows a passenger is overly intoxicated and poses a danger to themself, the cruise line turns a blind eye.  All too often we see the cruise lines’ inaction lead to tragedy, whether a fall over board or a sexual assault.

Although we do not know the cause of this most recent death, we hope that it is not due to the poor choices of the cruise line. After all, when you choose to take a cruise, you are placing your trust in the company to have your safety and best interest at heart. This responsibility is something that should not be taken lightly. And, if it is, you should know that you can take legal action to achieve the justice you deserve.

Let LM&W, PA Take Your Case

At Lipcon, Margulies & Winkleman, P.A., we have experience helping individuals and family members of victims who have suffered as a result of cruise line negligence or dangerous behavior. We understand the obstacles you are facing, on an emotional and legal level, and we are prepared to lend a hand.

So if you have questions about your current situation and are seeking a trusted team of maritime lawyers who can help, do not hesitate to contact us.

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