In recent years, South Africa has focused on growing its cruise industry–an unsurprising development, given that the cruise industry is now a multi-billion-dollar enterprise, accommodating over 20 million passengers a year worldwide. Those numbers are up from just five million passengers 15 to 20 years ago. The substantial growth is enticing various nations to invest in tourism opportunities that include cruises and contracts with the major cruise lines for port space.
However, few countries have the traction within the cruise industry that can be seen in South Africa. It is currently one of the fastest growing cruise ship markets in the world, with a 144% increase in the number of cruise passengers who stopped in South Africa between 2006 and 2014. Part of the reason for South Africa’s unique growth has been the pre-existence of numerous ports that could be accessed by large cruise ships.
The country of South Africa enjoys a substantial amount of coastline, and along that coastline historically, and still today, fantastic ports. Today, the ports with cruise ship terminals that welcome passengers are Cape Town, Durban, Port Elizabeth, Mossel Bay, Richards Bay, and East London. On 61 different days last year, cruise ships pulled into those ports and passengers alighted to explore different parts of South Africa. The result is a significant boom for the South African tourism industry.
Despite all this recent success with major cruise lines visiting the country, South Africa still foresees significant opportunity for growth in the tourism industry. Most cruise lines that visit South Africa are ultra-luxury cruise ships from the cruise lines with a reputation for high-end sailing, including Silversea, Oceania, Regent Seven Seas, and MSC. In the upcoming years, other types of cruise lines will likely become involved in the South African market. This means more people and more tourism dollars for the country, but it also means a higher likelihood of accidents and injuries aboard these ships.
Filing Your Claim for a South Africa Cruise Injury
Filing a claim for a South Africa cruise injury is complex process that requires the help of an experienced maritime injury attorney, and in most cases one located in Miami, FL, as most of the cruise lines such as Royal Caribbean, Norwegian, Carnival, Celebrity, MSC, etc. are headquartered here in Miami. Hidden in the fine print of your passenger ticket is the requirement for all claims against these cruise lines to be filed in Federal Court in Miami, FL.
The number of mishaps for cruise ship passengers to and from South Africa is already growing. These passengers may experience a slip, trip, fall, or other type of personal injury aboard a cruise ship. If those injuries result from the negligence of the cruise company or its employees, the injured passengers may think they can file a lawsuit in South Africa or their home country. However, this is unlikely to be the case.
Cruise companies are explicit about where and how a personal injury lawsuit can be filed. To ensure that cruise passengers must file their lawsuits in a particular place, cruise lines make the requirement part of their standard contractual agreement with passengers. This comes as a shock to most passengers, who are entirely unaware that they have entered into this agreement. Where is this hidden contract? It is printed on the back of your cruise ticket or confirmation document.
Accordingly, following an injury it is important to learn the specific requirements of a cruise company. Depending upon the jurisdiction the company stipulates for a lawsuit, there will be limitations on how and when a passenger can file a lawsuit. Wait too long, and you may lose the right to compensation at all. This is because United States jurisdictions–including Miami, Florida, where most companies require lawsuits to be filed–enforce a statute of limitations as part of their regulations.
Our firm offers a free initial consultation to anyone who has been involved in an accident during a cruise. We offer nearly 50 years of combined legal experience in fighting cruise lines that put their profits ahead of passenger safety. Our offices are based in Miami, near the Port of Miami, and the corporate headquarters of Carnival, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity, and Norwegian Cruise Lines.
Call our offices toll free at 1-866-597-4529 or email us at [email protected] and speak with an experienced maritime accident attorney today. We work solely on a contingency-fee basis, which means we are not paid until we successfully recover monetary damages for our clients.
Injured passengers with viable claims against cruise ships are entitled to receive money for pain and suffering, time lost from work, medical reimbursement, travel expense, and loss of the enjoyment of the cruise. We encourage you to contact us as soon as possible following an accident as important evidence–such as CCTV footage, witness names and statements, your shoes, and medical records–must be preserved and obtained before memories fade or evidence is lost.
Our lawyers who sue cruise ships are ready to help you–call us today.