Contributors
Charles R. Lipcon

Charles R. Lipcon is the firm's founding attorney and has been handling personal injury, cruise line sexual assault and wrongful death claims for over 40 years.Read More »

Jason R. Marguiles

Jason R. Margulies is an experienced maritime lawyer and an active trial attorney handling personal injury, cruise line sexual assault and wrongful death claims.Read More »

Ricardo V. Alsina

Ricardo V. Alsina is an active trial attorney, handling personal injury, cruise line sexual assault and wrongful death claims.Read More »

Michael A. Winkleman

Mr. Winkleman is an active trial and appellate attorney handling all personal injury, cruise line sexual assault and wrongful death claims, as well as complex business disputes.Read More »

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hypothermia, hypothermia treatment, boating accident lawyersIn our last blog, our boating accident lawyers discussed one of the most common, yet treatable conditions that can arise at sea and pose a deadly situation for boaters – heat exhaustion. Heat exhaustion results when an individual becomes dehydrated while experiencing hot temperatures. But while it can be fatal if left untreated, recognizing the signs of heat exhaustion and understanding the steps that can be taken to both treat and prevent this condition can lead to a successful recovery. The same applies to other common conditions that boaters may face while out in open waters.

On the other end of the spectrum from heat exhaustion is another condition that can threaten the lives of boaters – hypothermia. Hypothermia results when the body’s temperatures cool down to dangerous levels. This can happen, for example, if a boater falls into cold water.

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first aid, cpr, boating safety, boating accident lawyerOur boating accident attorneys here at LMAW recently discussed the importance of learning CPR and first aid techniques before going out into open water. These techniques can keep boaters and their passengers safe while also ensuring that boaters are self-reliant when they head out to remote areas on their boats. Heart attacks, drowning, and excessive bleeding are extreme medical emergencies that require stabilization of the victim and then hospitalization. Yet, there are some more common medical situations boaters might encounter while at sea that are both easily preventable and manageable—if caught early.

One of the most common conditions that individuals sailing on a boat may face is heat exhaustion. While this is actually a condition that can be treated successfully if caught in time, unfortunately, not many people are aware of the simple steps they can take to do so. Let’s take a look at some of the ways heat exhaustion can be treated.

First, it’s important to actually understand what heat exhaustion is. Heat exhaustion occurs when a person suffers from dehydration while experiencing hot temperatures: conditions that can easily arise when people are riding on a boat. Continue reading

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Royal Caribbean, Liberty of the Seas, passenger overboard, Florida Keys, cruise lawyersThey say that bad things come in threes. Well, it seems that for the cruise industry, bad things come with a lot more frequency than that. Our cruise lawyers here at Lipcon, Margulies, Alsina & Winkleman, P.A. have recently blogged about three tragic overboard accidents that have occurred within the cruise industry in just the last two weeks alone. And now, we’re shocked to learn that yet another cruise passenger has gone missing from a ship. If this isn’t a sign that there should be an industry-wide mandate to install man overboard detection technology on ALL ships, we don’t know what is.

According to news reports, the latest man overboard accident occurred on Sunday night. The victim, a male passenger who was sailing aboard Royal Caribbean’s Liberty of the Seas cruise ship, allegedly disappeared while the vessel was sailing roughly 20 miles off the coast of the Florida Keys. As with the other three overboard accidents, Royal Caribbean hasn’t shared much regarding the incident. In fact, we don’t even know if the man actually fell or jumped from the ship!

The cruise line released a statement saying that surveillance footage was reviewed, which showed the man climbing over the railing on deck 12 of the ship, and then jumped. But is the cruise line sure he really jumped?

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first aid, cpr, boating safety, boating accident lawyerBoaters may not realize it, but when they leave the shore and head out into open water, they are venturing out into a wilderness situation where help can be miles away and where self-reliance is key. There are many basic things boaters can do to be safer, among them requiring all passengers on board to wear safety vests and also ensuring that the boat has all required safety equipment in accordance with current Coast Guard regulations. One additional thing that boaters can do to be safe and keep those around them safe is to learn CPR and first aid skills.

CPR, or Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation, is a form of first-aid that is administered to a victim whose heart has stopped. While a great majority of heart attack victims die before they reach the hospital (92%), The American Heart Association suggests that many more of these victims could have survived if people around them had known CPR techniques. For heart attack victims, CPR allows blood to keep flowing to the brain, ensuring that the brain stays alive, even after the heart has stopped. If a person can be kept alive long enough for doctors to discover what is blocking or stopping the heart, the person has a far greater chance of survival. If a heart attack victim receives CPR, his or her chances of survival increase by twofold or even threefold amounts. Medical advances in heart care make it possible for medical practitioners to keep victims alive in the hospital long enough to discover the heart problem, and, if possible, fix it. Unfortunately, many heart attack victims arrive at the hospital dead because those around them were not able to administer immediate first aid.

When individuals go out on boats, CPR training is even more critical because help can be miles and sometimes hours away. The American Heart Association reports that as many as 70% of Americans don’t know how to react in a cardiac emergency. Unfortunately, many of these emergencies take place at home or at places where immediate medical care is unavailable.

But as any boating accident lawyer at our firm can tell you, when individuals go out to sea, heart attacks are not the only risk. Continue reading

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boating season, boating accidents, boating safety, boating accident lawyersSpringtime is here, which means that boating season is back in full swing. Temperatures are warming up around the country, and eager sailors are ready to hit the waters and take advantage. Unfortunately, while boating season brings a host of exciting opportunities to experience the beauty of the great outdoors, the thrill of sailing, and the pleasure of spending quality time with loved ones, it also brings with it a greater number of dangers that can lead to serious accidents.

During boating season, you’ll naturally see a huge increase in traffic on waterways. What makes this an issue is that not everyone operating a boat or water craft is experienced or careful to abide by proper maritime safety laws. Because there are a greater number of people occupying waterways, there is a larger chance of finding reckless boaters who will disregard safety regulations. There will be a greater number of boaters who will speed, drink while boating, fail to ensure their vessels are properly maintained, and engage in a slew of other unsafe actions.

Though our boating accident lawyers here at LMAW have offered several tips on how to stay safe while out on a boat or personal water craft, there are some boaters who don’t understand the gravity of engaging in reckless actions in open waters, and place themselves – and everyone within their radius – in harm’s way. It’s important to remember that even the most prudent and experienced of boaters can fall victim to an accident, whether due to their own or someone else’s careless actions or because of unforeseen circumstances.

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Carnival Triumph, passenger overboard, Gulf of Mexico, cruise ship accident lawyersIt’s only been a few days since our cruise ship accident lawyers here at Lipcon, Margulies, Alsina & Winkleman, P.A. reported on a tragic overboard accident involving a Virginia Tech university student who fell overboard from the Carnival Glory, but now, we’re saddened and shocked to report that yet another Carnival Cruise Line passenger has suffered a similar fate.

According to news reports, the body of a male passenger who fell overboard from the Carnival Triumph has been recovered. The victim’s body was found today, Wednesday, March 18, after officials had been notified that a 54-year-old passenger had fallen overboard while the vessel was sailing into the Gulf of Mexico.

From what we’ve learned, authorities were notified of the overboard accident on Tuesday. After receiving a report of a possible overboard accident, the Triumph’s crew reviewed the ship’s surveillance footage, which confirmed that the passenger had, indeed, fallen from the vessel. News reports say the Triumph’s crew then initiated a search for the missing man and notified maritime and Mexican authorities of the accident. Officials in Mexico also initiated a search and rescue mission to find the missing passenger.

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SuperStar Libra, Star Cruises, overboard passenger, man overboard detection technology, cruise accident attorneysLast week, the cruise accident attorneys at our firm discussed a tragic overboard accident involving a Virginia Tech student. The victim, only 21 years old, was reported to have fallen overboard from the Carnival Glory while the vessel was sailing near the Bahamas. Though the cruise line did not offer much information surrounding the cause of the accident, one thing was made clear: cruise lines have yet to install man overboard detection technology, which could drastically improve the rate of survival for overboard victims.

We would hope that the more than 200 overboard accidents that have already transpired in just the last 20 years would have sparked a much needed change within the cruise industry regarding safety enhancements – especially when it comes to installing man overboard detection systems – but alas, this vital lifesaving technology has yet to be implemented industry wide. And now, yet another cruise passenger has fallen victim to an overboard accident.

According to a Malaysian news article, the body of a Star Cruises passenger was discovered last night (March 16). The victim, a 50-year-old Indonesian male passenger, was found by a fisherman in Malaysian waters three days after the overboard accident was alleged to have transpired.

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Cruise passenger, Carnival Glory, overboardOur cruise ship accident lawyers here at LMAW are saddened to report that the search for a missing Carnival Cruise passenger has officially been called off. The victim, a 21-year-old Virginia Tech student, fell overboard from the Carnival Glory while it was sailing near the Bahamas. Though the loss is a tragic one, the accident highlights yet another tragedy – the lack of passenger safety within the cruise industry.

According to NBC news reports on the matter, the U.S. Coast Guard called off the search for missing cruise passenger Cameroon Smook on March 10. Smook had been sailing aboard the Carnival Glory with some of his friends on a 7-day Caribbean itinerary when he was reported missing on Sunday, March 8, a day after the vessel set sail. After reviewing the ship’s surveillance footage, authorities were able to confirm Smook did, indeed, fall from the ship.

An air and sea search for the overboard cruise passenger was initiated roughly five miles south of Great Abaco Island in the Bahamas, extending a 6,500 nautical square mile area (approximately). Reports also indicate that a second Carnival ship, the Carnival Ecstasy, was called to assist with the mission and diverted its itinerary in order to help maritime authorities in their search.

The loss of this young victim is not one to be taken lightly. A gifted student, Smook was just weeks away from graduating with a mining engineering degree from Virginia Tech. According to his family, Smook had recently accepted a job offer and was excited to start the next chapter in his life – a life that would end far too soon.

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Safety tips, cruise ship rape, spring breakersSpring break is around the corner, which means there are going to be a lot of kids, teens, and college students cruising around the world. Some will be cruising with their parents, while others will venture off into the seas with friends. Given the higher number of young passengers that will be sailing on cruise vacations in the upcoming weeks, our attorneys here at LMAW would like to take a moment to discuss one of the largest threats that often face young and female travelers while out at sea: cruise ship rape.

Though cruise vacations are intended to be fun and relaxing, they often become a breeding grounds for cruise ship rape crimes. Statistics show that sexual assault is the type of crime that occurs most frequently on cruise ships, which is why it is imperative that spring breaker cruisers remain as cautious as possible. If you have planned on going on a cruise during spring break, our cruise ship rape lawyers have three important tips that can help you avoid becoming a victim of a sexual crime: Continue reading

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Safety tips, fishing, boating accident lawyerFishing is often seen as a relaxing sport that allows participants to enjoy time in nature, and maybe get a nice meal or two out of it in the process. But with fishing season is fast-approaching, it’s important to remember that though fun, any activity in open water carries a risk of danger – even fishing. Any boating accident lawyer at our firm can tell you horror stories of fishermen that can leave you cringing, but the best way to avoid a tragedy is through awareness.

So, before you take out your tackle and hit the coast, shore, or high seas, be sure to take the time to brush up on safety laws and tactics. Below are seven important safety tips that will help reduce your risk of accident and injury while fishing, whether you are an experienced angler or novice fishing enthusiast: Continue reading