Cruise ship companies like Carnival Cruise Lines, Norwegian Cruise Lines, Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, and other carriers market to and welcome children as guests on the ship for both short and long term trips. As such, cruise ships should be constructed and maintained in a reasonable manner that under maritime law. The cruise ship operator had a duty to remove or limit hazards and to put reasonable necessary safety measures for both children and adults. All interior and exterior passageways should be constructed and maintained according to applicable ship, building, and safety codes. When an adult or child is injured as a passenger on a cruise ship, the cruise ship line, company, or operator is not automatically or strictly liability. There must be a showing of fault or liability for the incident at issue. This is commonly referred to as negligence which requires the proof or showing of four elements to establish a legal case or claim: Duty, Breach of Duty, Causation, and Damages.
It was recently reported by a number of media outlets that an eight year old girl who was a passenger on the ship – Glory – operated by Carnival Cruise Lines fell approximately 20 feet while inside the atrium area of the boat. It was reported that the medical team for the ship was soon thereafter on the scene to attend to the child. The incident took place while the ship was docked at the Port of Miami. Since a serious injury occurred in the form of a death, there will be a full investigation by government authorities as well as an autopsy. Concurrent or subsequent to the criminal investigation, there can also be an investigation by the family, private investigators, engineers, and, yes, a legal team hired by the family of the child. Again, it should be noted that a cruise ship is not automatically liable for every single injury or death that occurs on a boat. Negligence or fault must be established to support a civil case or claim if one is pursued by the family of the child. You can read more about the Carnival Cruise Lines incident involving the 8 year old girl who fell at Girl as a Result of Fall at Port of Miami – Carnival Cruise Lines.
It should be noted that cruise ship legal cases are much different than other types of injury cases like ones involving an automobile accident or a slip and fall while at a store or shopping center while on land. The cruise line ticket can define and control time limits and court or forum choices for a legal case. In addition, there are strict time limits by law for cruise ship / maritine cases.
In the State of Florida, it is a crime to leave a child unattended in a vehicle that is turned off. Pursuant to Section 316.6135, Florida Statutes, it is a misdemeanor to leave a child unattended in a vehicle for more than 15 minutes. It is a felony if the child suffers significant bodily harm, permanent injury, or disfigurement as a result of being left unattended in the vehicle. It is also a misdemeanor leaving a child unattended in a vehicle that is still running if the health of the child is put at risk OR the child appears to be in distress.
The statute as it currently reads is a bit troublesome in that a child can suffer serious personal injuries or even death by being left in a hot car or day care center van in less than 15 minutes. Some lawmakers in the State of Florida are pushing for changes to this legislation / Florida law to better protect children and to serve as a reminder to parents, guardians, caregivers, and day care centers to stop putting children at risk by leaving children in a vehicle.
David Wolf – Personal Injury Attorney – is based in Jacksonville, Florida and handles child injury, automobile accident, day care center, and related cases throughout the State of Florida. He is the author of 11 books including the book titled The ABCs of Child Injury – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – What Every Parent Should Know and the book titled Florida Day Care Center Injuries – Legal Rights of the Injured Child – Building Blocks of Knowledge for Parents. You can get these books for free by visiting the Personal Injury Book Section of the Wood, Atter & Wolf, P.A. Law Firm Website.
In Florida and other states, headlines are made when there is an automobile accident involving serious personal injuries or the death of a driver or passenger. This is especially true when children and reengages are the unfortunate victims in a Florida Automobile Accident Crash. The death of a teenager can have a ripple effect throughout the community. In many instances, a school crisis team is put in place to provide some guidance and counseling to the other students at the school where the victim attended. Certainly, the biggest loss is upon the parents. It is unnatural in the scheme of things for a parent to suffer the loss of a child especially after putting in some many years of work and love to raise the child from an infant to a young adult. When a teenager dies, so much of the promise that was there just disappears in a moment of time. It is the moment of time in which another driver was speeding or otherwise not paying attention. This momentarily lapse in good judgment and safe driving can and does often lead to serious personal injuries and the deaths of innocent drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and bicyclists.
Just recently, an 18 year old died in an automobile accident which took place in St. Johns County – St. Augustine, Florida near the World Golf Village area. It was reported by a number of media outlets that Griffin Moody, who had just graduated from Allen D. Nease High School in June 2016 died as a result of this 2 vehicle crash. The crash occurred on Murabella Parkway according to the Florida Highway Patrol. Griffin Moody was a passenger in a 2005 Ford Focus that was being driven by another teenager. It was also reported that five other people suffered personal injuries in this crash.
Florida has statutes in place that set forth the rules of the road. Generally, drivers should obey the posted speed limits and yield the right of way to drivers on the roadway. A left hand turning vehicle should yield the right of way to oncoming traffic. All drivers should maintain control of the respective vehicles and otherwise remain attentive to traffic conditions, road conditions, and weather conditions. Each driver has a duty to avoid a crash when he or she has the ability to do so. It should be noted that each Florida Automobile Accident should be evaluated based on its own facts and merits. When a persona dies as result of a Florida traffic crash, the local law enforcement department and / or Florida Highway Patrol will investigate and issue a Florida Homicide Traffic Report upon completion of the investigation. It should noted that the results or conclusions of such a report are not binding per se on insurance companies or any further potential civil cases.
In the State of Florida and across the nation, one of the leading causes of death for small children, and especially toddlers, is drowning. In Florida, there are private residential swimming pools, public swimming pools, and hotel/motel/resort swimming pools in just about every community. It is important for property owners, business owners, home owners, and government entity to properly safeguard the swimming pool and aquatic area for the protection of children. It is well known and expected that a child, especially one of tender years, under the age of 5 years old, to be curious and inquisitive about interesting areas and what is deemed under Florida Law to be an “attractive nuisance.”
Unfortunately and tragically, there are reports of drowning incidents every summer, spring and the rest of the year in Florida. Many such incidents are preventable with the proper implementation and maintenance of swimming pool fences and barriers, swimming pool alarms, proper adult supervision, proper lifesaving equipment, and the posting of trained and attentive life guards when appropriate. When a child suffers personal injury or dies as a result of a drowning incident there may be a case or claim to pursue on behalf of the child and the family. To establish a legal claim r case, there must be proof and evidence of the following four elements: