While enjoying that relaxing adventuress luxury Catamaran you’ve planned for months, accidents of all kinds can occur. Cruise ship passengers are often injured from slips and falls, assaults on board by the ship’s crew, or even sexual assault. Even though the thought of experiencing a cruise ship accident may not be a priority when planning your trip, it is important to be prepared in case it occurs.
Take Photos of The Injury and The Scene
If possible, try to collect evidence at the accident scene. For example, if you slipped and fell on a wet floor with no warning signs, take pictures of the scene before it is cleaned up or repaired by employees of the cruise line. These photos can serve as valuable negligence evidence in support of your case.
Take Down Names of The Witnesses
If you can do so, obtain statements from witnesses who may have seen your accident. These witness statements will serve as a piece of evidence when you file your claim against the cruise line. Get the names of all witnesses, addresses, and phone numbers, and provide them with your attorney.
Report The Accident
Someone onboard should know what happened. Give out the details of where and when the accident happened and any witnesses present. This may require filing an incident report with security or a passenger relations staff. Ensure they record the injury and get a copy before going outboard the cruise ship.
Don’t Accept Offers from Cruise Line
Cruise lines will often attempt to settle cases as quickly as possible after an accident. However, their offers are usually far below what you might actually get after a lawsuit. Consult with an attorney before accepting any settlement offer from the cruise line or their insurance company.
Seek Medical Attention
Cruise ships have doctors and nurses who can treat common injuries at sea. But if your injury is serious, you should look for specialized care elsewhere—prompt medical treatment helps minimize health complications. In addition, seeking immediate medical treatment serves as evidence of your injuries. The lawyer will use the record when seeking compensation.
Don’t Sign Anything
This is the single most important thing you can do to protect yourself. Cruise lines will try to get you to sign documents that limit their liability and relinquish your legal rights. If you doubt what you’re signing, don’t sign it and contact a lawyer for guidance.
Watch What You Say
Like any other business, cruise ships have lawyers who protect their interests and business from liability. After an accident, do not talk to crew members or anyone else about your case until you have spoken with an attorney to advise you of your options.
Keep All Documents Associated with The Accident
Keep copies of all documents related to your injury and treatment, including medical bills and prescription medication. Also, preserve the repair invoices if your personal property was damaged in the accident and other paperwork. These documents can be used as evidence in court.
If you wait too long after an accident in an adventure, you will lose your right to pursue compensation for your injuries. The statute of limitations is different in every state and jurisdiction. This is why it’s important to contact an experienced maritime injury lawyer immediately after an accident.
Looking For a Lawyer
If you were injured due to another person’s negligence, you might be entitled to compensation for your medical bills and other expenses. However, hire an experienced lawyer.
If you are injured or have a medical emergency on board a cruise ship, alert the staff immediately. If you have serious injuries, call emergency rescue personnel. Next, consult a cruise ship accident lawyer to assist you in filing a lawsuit.