The LA Times recently published a piece regarding a study performed by Swedish economists that delved into the idea of shipwrecks and accidents and how people act under the stress of these situations. While recounts of the Titanic show women and children being evacuated from the sinking ship prior to men, it seems that today women and children and only half as likely as crew members and captains to survive maritime accidents. It seems the mentality that overtakes these scenarios is more along the lines of “every man for himself.”
Comparisons and contrasts have been noted between the Titanic, today’s Costa, the English Birkenhead and found that the Titanic and the Birkenhead both followed women & children evacuation protocol. In both of these instances, the survival rate of women surpassed men. As far as a legal aspect, it is noted by cruise ship accident attorneys that “women and children first” is a common saying, but it is not codified anywhere in maritime law.