Another Outbreak of Norovirus Flows Through Princess Cruise Lines

Princess Cruise Line advised the public of an outbreak of gastrointestinal illness on the Crown Princess. The outbreak is suspected to be the Norovirus. 23 crew members and 94 passengers have fallen ill, and official statements from the the cruise line indicate that several measures have been taken to sanitize the ship and limit the spread of infection. This outbreak follows a recent one in January, where the Caribbean Princess death with an outbreak that affected 165 passengers. The Norovirus is a serious gastrointestinal illness, easily contacted in close quarters, and can lead to hospitalization and death. Symptoms include vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, abdominal pain, and fever. To avoid the virus or spreading germs, prevention can be taken in the form of frequent hand washing, disinfecting surfaces, and rinsing fruits and vegetables prior to consumption.

As a passenger or crew member from Washington or a nearby state, you may have questions as to what remedies are available if you are injured or fall ill while on a cruise ship vessel. While the owner of the vessel owes both its passengers and crew members reasonable care under the circumstances, there are different sets of considerations for each group. Passengers are are often limited in the time allotted for bringing a claim and providing notice to the cruise line. These timelines are usually written on the cruise ship ticket that you signed prior to boarding. Often, cruise ship companies require notice of the claim within 6 months of the injury and suit to be filed within a year. Location of the suit is also determined by the contract, and is often limited to the state where the ship's headquarters are located.

Crew members are afforded more instant relief under maritime law. If a crew member is injured or falls ill, they are entitled to maintenance and cure, which provides a daily stipend for living expenses and payment for medical expenses until the crew member returns to full health. The amount of maintenance is usually determined by the employment contract signed prior to working at sea, and medical expenses can include doctor's visits and medical supplies.

If you have become ill or injured while a passenger on a cruise ship, or been injured while working at sea as a crew member for a cruise ship, commercial fishing vessel, or tug and barge company, contact our office to speak with one of our experienced Washington Jones Act attorneys today. We aggressively fight for our clients to receive the compensation they deserve. Call today at 877.800.1007 or contact us online.

Both crew members and passengers are also entitled to a seaworthy vessel, or a ship that is fit for sailing. Conditions onboard that are unsafe and are either known or should have been revealed to the ship owner, creates liability for the owner of the vessel. To succeed in a claim against a cruise line, one must show that the failure to uphold the duty of reasonable care or a seaworthy vessel resulted in the injuries or illness sustained onboard.

Crew members and passengers all board a vessel expecting safe and sanitary passage. If you have been subjected to injury or illness due to a cruise line's negligence, then call the Washington cruise ship injury attorneys, Gordon Webb and John Merriam today. Immediate action is always better, as evidence can be lost or destroyed, and memories fade with time. For a free, confidential consultation, call our office at 877.800.1007.

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