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Cruise passenger awarded £15,000 following accident in hazardous conditions

19th January 2018

After a cruise accident resulted in our client suffering a dislocated shoulder and a fractured humerus, we found that health and safety process on the Marco Polo that could have prevented her injury were not being followed. As a result of our representation, our client was awarded £15,000 in compensation.

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Cruise accident caused by hazardous conditions

Our client advised us that she booked a cruise aboard the Marco Polo through Cruise and Maritime. She says that everything was going well until a few days into her journey when the Marco Polo encountered rough seas. She says that the ship began to roll and list to the extent that items were thrown from the tables of the restaurant area during breakfast.

She told us that despite the hazardous conditions, there were no announcements informing passengers of which safety procedures they should follow. Because there was no advice given, later that day our client went to a bar so that she could read her book. While sat at a table, the Marco Polo began to roll and our client was thrown from her chair. As a result of her accident, our client dislocated her left shoulder and sustained a fracture to the greater tuberosity of her humerus.

After the accident occurred, an announcement was made on the cruise liner that the bar our client was in was unsafe and should be avoided.

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Investigation shows that health and safety processes were lacking

Once our client instructed us to represent her, we began to investigate her case to assess why her accident wasn't prevented. We found that passengers weren't notified of the risks that the impending conditions that the ship was about to face would pose.

Cruise safety during storms

It's clear that the passengers should have been notified that the poor weather conditions would make certain areas of the Marco Polo unsafe and that they should return to their cabins, potentially bracing themselves for the impact of the waves hitting the ship.

We also found that the chairs being used in the bar that our client was reading her book in were prone to toppling over in rough seas. Put simply, not enough was done to assess the impending risks and to warn passengers until it was too late.

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£15,000 compensation awarded

Our client's injuries were severe, and although they healed, she was left with a stiffness that will limit her movements indefinitely. In representing our client, we found that her injuries could have been prevented if more effective health and safety measures were implemented aboard the Marco Polo, something which Cruise and Maritime should have ensured was being done.

Because of the pain and suffering that our client endured and the lasting impact that the accident will have on her quality of life, under the Athens Convention she was awarded £15,000 in compensation.

About the Athens Convention

The Athens Convention is a powerful piece of legislation that is intended to protect passengers on cruise ships, so long as their journey is classified as an international carriage by sea. For this to happen, a cruise liners port of departure needs to be different from its destination, or as is the case for many cruises, there needs to be a port of call in a country other than the one it departed from.

So long as this is the case, it's the responsibility of the carrier you hold a contract with, which for our client was Cruise and Maritime, to ensure that you are kept safe from the point of embarkation until disembarkation, otherwise they could be liable for your injuries. In simple term, this means that if they fail to address hygiene issues and you suffer from food poisoning, or if you're injured during an accident aboard a cruise that could have been prevented, you may be able to claim compensation.

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Find out if you can claim compensation

It only takes a few minutes to find out if you're able to claim compensation under the Athens Convention. Just contact a member of our travel law team and we'll provide you with a free no-obligation assessment of your case, during which we can advise you of which methods are available to you to pursue a complaint.

If you choose to instruct us to represent you in making a compensation claim, we can do so on a 'no win no fee' basis.

Ross Smith - Partner, Holiday Claims

Contact us for free no-obligation holiday accident claims advice

To find out more about claiming compensation; contact Ross Smith by filling in our enquiry form and we will call you back, or call us directly on 0808 145 1353.

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