In our last blog, our firm discussed a tragic accident involving a Carnival Spirit crew member. The victim, who allegedly worked in the ship’s kitchen, was reported missing July 8 after failing to report to his station and was presumed to have fallen overboard. The area where the victim was presumed to have fallen overboard was scoured, but sadly, the search for the missing man was called off the following day.
Carnival alleges the vessel was turned around immediately after a shipboard search did not find the missing man and the appropriate authorities were notified. But is there more to this accident than meets the eye? Did Carnival follow protocol or could something more have been done to try and save the crew member?
An article in the Sydney Morning Herald online site discusses a Carnival Spirit passenger’s testimony that is rather alarming. The passenger, who wished to remain anonymous , told Fairfax Media that an announcement had been made at around 9:30 am on July 8 informing those on board that a crew member had gone missing. However, the passenger claims the ship did not turn around until around 2pm. The passenger also added that it is possible the crew member could have been missing since the previous night, when the ship left Vanuatu.
The passenger’s recount, if accurate, could mean quite a bit for Carnival. For one, it could mean the ship’s operators did not initiate a search as quickly as they should have and if so, may be held liable for the crew member’s death.