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Author: Michael Ehline - Cruise Ship Lawyer

Cruise Death

Why Are there So Many Cruise Liner Deaths?

Cruise ship on blue ocean.
Big ships like this are responsible for massive cruise ship accidents.

Tragedy struck an innocent family after their eight year old daughter died on a cruise ship. The tragedy is one of dozens that happen each year. The growing issue of cruise line safety is not appropriately addressed on the state or federal level.

Fox40 reported on the situation with Miami-Dade police. The girl died on a Carnival Cruise Lines ship Carnival Glory. The ship docked at Port Miami. The girl fell from the ship’s interior atrium to the lower deck around 8:15 am. First responders transported her to Jackson Memorial Hospital where she died. A spokesperson for the Fire-Rescue said she fell about 20 feet.

Potential Fault on the Cruise Line

Carnival apologized to the family, but it is clear this is not enough. Authorities allowed the ship to resume normal operations. However, a death deserves a closer look. Rescuers and investigators must thoroughly review the ship and ensure no future similar event. Each life is precious. We do not need such disasters as occurred here. Furthermore, the line clearly did not live up to expectations.

The family has many potential approaches. Furthermore, it is our responsibility to prevent a future such horror. In addition, Carnival and other liners should take safety more seriously. It is the least they could do. Our team is looking into the causes of the accident.

Our lead attorney, Michael Ehline, is a top fighter for families harmed by cruise line companies. He is an advocate and lobbyist in both Sacramento and DC for cruise line safety. He’s worked with legislators of both parties on basic regulation to protect passengers. For more info or to speak with one of the experts at the Ehline Law Firm APLC, please contact us today. We will meet anywhere in the state to discuss your legal options in a free, no-pressure consultation. We stand ready for you.

Ehline Law Leading in Cruise Safety Lobbying

Experts Acting in Washington

The Ehline Law Firm APLC carved out its reputation as a leading consumer and travel safety practice in California. The firm’s leaders are not content to leave it at that. Michael Ehline, the founding partner of the firm, took his efforts to Washington to improve cruise safety nationwide. His efforts with industry experts and consumer rights groups establish a safer and better experience for all.

Ehline worked on this project for years. However, he is not done yet. New legislation in Washington seeks needed change. Much of the message is simple: allow cruise passengers the same rights as airplane passengers.It seems simple, but the government is slow to adopt these changes. This is especially the case due to heavy pressure from large cruise corporations. This legislation allows passengers to hold the cruise lines responsible for deaths at sea. Furthermore, it allows passengers a chance to pursue fair compensation.

One of the leading victims’ rights groups, International Cruise Victims, fights its hardest. Michael Ehline is proud to fight with them. The ICV supports a bipartisan bill which strengthens safety laws. The Cruise Passenger Protection Act, or CPPA as reported in FoxNews, goes a long way in the right direction. Many of these protections are common sense, including a requirement that cruise lines notify the FBI within 4 hours of a death. It also allows access to survaillance records for victims.

Leading Reform in Washington

Michael Ehline is no stranger to reform efforts in DC. His years of experience there led to a number of changes in the cruise ship industry. His partnership with ICV is one of the largest accomplishments.

“I am proud to be a persistent voice for victims,” Ehline said. “Our work isn’t finished, but this does give vital rights for passengers and their loved ones.”

A vote on the legislation is expected soon. Keep it posted here for more information.

Fighting To Force the Coast Guard to Serve Cruise Passengers

Removing Loopholes to Protect Cruise Ship Passengers

Protecting cruise liner passengers should be the top priority of all cruise lines. Unfortunately, recent cases show this is not always the case. By advocating for passengers, we are one step closer to a more just system.

Michael Ehline lobbies Congress for safe transportation.

The Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act was an important part of that puzzle. Still, there are substantial concerns about its implementation. All of these are good questions for the public. How the government uses the law is another questions.

The act intended to solve many of the underlying issues. We still have far more work ahead of us. Our lead attorney, Michael Ehline, tirelessly pursues better regulation. He lobbied in Washington for consumer friendly revisions to existing laws and statutes. Each one of these raises their issues. We here at Ehline Law have a chance to make a difference. Our team is at the ready for the consumer.

Removing Cruise Ship Company Loopholes

Some of the major concerns include the fact that medical staff must follow protocols after all medical cases, and not just sexual assault. A “man overboard” warning system needs to go on all cruise ships. Regulations allow a “foreign vessel loophole” for other nations’ vessels to skirt our laws. Acoustic sounding devices are a deterrent against terrorism that should be on all new ships.

Thus, the Coast Guard has a responsibility in certifying Victim’s Advocates for cruise lines. This ensures that victims informed of their rights. Their testimony should also be confidential and allow them to contact law enforcement rather than leaving it in the hands of the cruise line. These are all parts of the picture.

The vast majority of Americans blame the cruise industry itself for many of these issues. We understand this issue personally. However, the above concerns are ongoing. It remains unfair that foreign companies worth billions use a loophole to flag a ship to skirt regulations.

All of these are unfair to American companies. Thus, it also works against the concerns of anyone on these vessels. It is key paying attention to how these laws are brought about. Furthermore, we get the worries of these people.

Furthermore, it raises concerns about the Coast Guard’s enforcement of foreign licensed cruise line companies which do not pay taxes in the United States. In addition, we understand that these regulations require changes, especially with a new President at the helm. We’ll be one of the cruise ship advocates for smarter, stronger protections.

Another Terrible Rape at Sea

Why Are There So Many Rapes on Cruise Liners?

One of the sad constants of the last several decades is an assault on cruise ships. There are multiple issues of fights and injury on these vessels. There are a variety of causes. Some boil down to a lack of regulation. In others, inadequate attention from the cruise company itself. Take for example a horrible rape case on a cruise line. The recent attack is a reminder of the dangers on these vessels. It also shows the lack of action from those big corporations.

Woman in fear of an assault

Take for example an attack in 2014. This crime occurred on a Holland America cruise in the Caribbean. Ketut Pejayasa attacked the Michigan woman. He now serves 30 years in a federal prison for attempted murder and aggravated sexual assault.

He tried to throw the woman overboard. The attacker choked the woman until she was unconscious and raped her. Blood covered her body. She had multiple broken bones in her back and face. She needed an air ambulance back to Florida.

The New York Times reported on an unfortunate reality. Such cases are all too usual. There is a normalization of this type of behavior on cruise lines. Furthermore, there is little to no action from the big cruise companies.

Fighting the Terrible Trend

Such a case might be normal now but doesn’t have to be. Furthermore, it is up to each consumer to fight back. We all have the power to change the way that the industry runs itself. Passengers do not have to put up with poor service, or worse. Criminal actions are unacceptable. We all have a part to play in making our ships safer.

Injured parties fight back through legal means. If a person needs a lawyer for a cruise ship injury, they contact a skilled expert. Ehline Law studied many such cases and represented clients in court. We win because we get the issues around the case. Our lead attorney, Michael Ehline, also works as a lobbyist in Washington fighting for passengers’ rights. Contact us for more information.

Recent Court Case and Cruise Ship Liability Problems for Passengers

Cruise ship on the blue ocean.
Is cruise ship going aground?

Surprisingly cruise ships and the cruise ship companies have been exempt from certain types of negligence like those that occur in hospital settings resulting in patients or their families being entitled to recover compensation. The compensation is generally for medical expenses and pain and suffering. But cruise ship companies have been an exception for medical malpractice lawsuits. A recent decision by the Florida 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals may change the way cruise ship lawsuits are decided.

What Is the Court’s Ruling?

The Florida 11th Court of Appeals ruled that the exemption for medical malpractice lawsuits was outdated involving cruise ships. The case involved an 82 year old year old man, a New York resident that fell and stuck his head in Bermuda in 2011 while on a Royal Caribbean cruise. The nurse attending the man aboard the Royal Caribbean cruise ship told the man to rest.

The family of the man claims in the lawsuit they filed the nurse did not suggest the man have a diagnostic scan done and then it was hours before the man was seen by the ship’s doctor, while his condition became worse. The lawsuit states the man had internal bleeding in the skull by the time he was seen by the doctor and succumbed to the head injury.

The Royal Caribbean medical staff wore the same uniforms as other ship employees and the medical staff was advertised as craft employees and in promotional material they were paid tribute to.

What the New Court Ruling Could Mean

If the decision of the 11th U.S. Court of Appeals is upheld, then it is possible for plaintiff’s alleging malpractice occurred on cruise ships to have their cases heard in court in the state of Florida (Read more.) In a statement by a Royal Caribbean representative they claim the rules that have applied in the past should be upheld, rather than the new ruling by the Court of Appeals. This is based on the factor that the cruise line offers vacations, but does not primarily provide health care for passengers.

Common Defense Used in Medical Cases

Defense in medical malpractice lawsuits occurring aboard cruise ships have commonly been rendered rulings by courts that the medical care provided to passengers on a ship is different than the scope of attention on land. Meaning according to this type of ruling passengers should not expect to receive the same standard of care onboard a luxury liner as they do from their private physicians.

What About the Missing Passengers?

While health care onboard cruise ships is a concern and the new ruling by the Court of Appeals could make a difference in how future cases are looked at by courts another problem that has grown is incidence of missing passengers. These are passengers and crew members that have fallen overboard ships, since as early as 2000. According to there have been 244 passengers and crew that have fallen overboard and approximately 20 passengers annually that have gone missing from the ships.

What Do The Cruise Ship Lawyers have to Say?

Our attorneys believe that no matter where doctors and nurses are employed they do have the duty to provide the best care possible for patients, even on cruise ships. If you or a loved one received care that was less than the standard care, consult our cruise ship medical malpractice lawyers about your case. And let us help you get the compensation you may be owed. Contact the maritime law firm here, or call toll free at 888-400-9721 to learn what your legal options are and the best way to proceed.

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Ehline Law Firm
Personal Injury Attorneys, APLC

633 W 5th St #2890
Los Angeles, CA 90071

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