A four year old boy nearly died while on a family cruise onboard a Royal Caribbean ship. The tragedy occurred aboard Royal Caribbean’s Oasis of the Seas, where the four year old child nearly drowned after wandering away from his mother on the ship’s 15th deck at the wave pool. According to reports, the boy’s mother searched for the child-but was unable to see that he has entered into the ship’s wave pool and apparently remained submerged for nearly 6 minutes. The boy is currently at Broward Health Medical Center in critical condition.
The accident occurred shortly after the ship left the Port Everglades and was headed out on a seven-night cruise to Labadee, Haiti; Falmouth, Jamaica; and Cozumel, Mexico. According to Broward Sheriff’s Department’s Fire Rescue spokesperson Mike Jachles that a fellow passenger spotted the child and pulled him from the water. Other passengers provided CPR until the ship’s medical crew arrived and transported him to the ship’s hospital-where they were able to restore his pulse and blood pressure.
The Oasis of the Seas is one of RCCL’s Freedom Class ships and is one of the newest and most complicated cruise ships in the world with 21 swimming pools and jacuzzis holding 5,070,632 lbs (2,330 tonnes) of water.
Drowning on Cruise Ships Occur with Frightening Frequency
Drowning on cruise ships can and do occur with frightening frequency. The problem often arises when parents, lured by the sun and sea take their eyes off of their children. In May 2014, a 6-year-old British boy was diagnosed with a severe brain injury after he was found at the bottom of a pool on RCCL’s Independence of the Sea. The accident occurred while the family was on a seven-night western European voyage and was force to return to port so the child could be airlifted to a hospital.
In February 2014, a 4-year-old boy died, and his 6-year-old brother was airlifted to the hospital in critical condition after they were found at the bottom of a swimming pool on the Norwegian Breakaway, a ship in NCL’s fleet.
In March 2013, a 4-year-old nearly drowned in a pool aboard Disney Cruise Line’s Fantasy. Chase Christopher Lykken was deprived of oxygen for up to six minutes when he nearly died aboard a Disney cruise. Lykken w who was also just 4 years old boy nearly died during a family cruise aboard Disney’s Fantasy. Police were unable to determine how the boy got away from his family. After that incident, Disney hired lifeguards for its cruise line pools.
Cruise lines like to give people the impression that they can leave their troubles behind when on board. They provide lodging, food, drinks, casinos, spas and entertainment. Yet when it comes to their swimming pools, jacuzzis, spas and aquatic attractions passengers are often left to fend for themselves.
According to admiralty law–cruise ships have an obligation to provide reasonable care to their passengers-both adults and children. We believe this includes posting appropriately trained lifeguards at all swimming pools, jacuzzis and wave riders. In fact, RCCL, Carnival, Princess and Norwegian do not post lifeguards.
Have You Been Injured on a Cruise Ship?
Remember that most cruise lines require that any claim be filed in the United States Federal Court in Miami within in one year of the date of the incident, regardless of where in the world the accident occurred or where the passenger lives.