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A former Royal Caribbean crew member wins $20.3 million after a jury finds her former employer responsible for a catastrophic injury in 2008 while she was working on board. Her injuries are so severe that her hand is unusable.

About Crew Member Injuries

With the average cruise ship setting sail with approximately 2,700 passengers aboard, it takes a lot of crew members to ensure a successful and safe trip. From the captain’s team to the food and beverage staff, each crew member faces unique tasks and challenges. This leads to a wide variety of potential crew member accidents and injuries. The most common injuries crew members report are burns, sprains, strains, and broken limbs. This can be the result of improper safety practices or faulty ship equipment. After a broken limb or sprain, a crew member could experience loss of wages. This shouldn’t happen especially if the cruise has been negligent.

Crew Member Hand Injury

Crew Member Injuries 300x211In August 2008, a marketing and revenue manager on Voyager of the Seas was sailing from Barcelona, Spain. While in port, the ship was conducting a routine fire safety drill. During the drill, some of the vessel’s semi-watertight doors, powerful doors that prevent water from flooding the ship, closed. A nurse from the port who was unaware of the drill tried to open one of the doors with a handle. However, the nurse fell trying to walk through the door and the marketing manager lunged forward to help her. When she put her hand on the handle to keep the door open, the sliding door lurched back into its recess pocket in the wall. This mashed her hand into a space only big enough to fit a pencil.
As bystanders called the ship’s bridge to disable the doors, her hand was sucked into the door’s pocket three more times. The door did not harm the nurse but the marketing manager broke her middle finger and her index finger. Plus, the door ripped the nails from the cuticles on both her fingers.

Cruise Ship Negligence

Royal Caribbean was responsible for the marketing manager’s injuries since the company was negligent staff training. No one trained the crew onboard on how to operate the type of door that crushed her hand. Also, the crew never informed the nurse that a security drill was taking place. However, this is not an uncommon injury. In the three years since the accident, 12 Royal Caribbean crew members suffered similar hand injuries from the door pockets.

Originally, Royal Caribbean paid the injured crew member a daily disability payment of $25, as stipulated in her employee disability insurance coverage. However, the marketing manager experienced chronic pain syndrome associated with a nervous system malfunction from the injury. The three-week jury trial ended with the jury finding Royal Caribbean at fault for their negligence. Also, the court ordered the cruise line to pay Spearman $20.3 million in damages, lost wages. and future medical expenses.

Crew Member Injuries Compensation

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Crew members could receive a wide range of compensation for on-the-job injuries. This may include payment for medical care and treatment, lost wages as well as damages for pain and suffering resulting from the accident. The amount of compensation depends upon the severity of the injury. Plus, it includes the number of wages the crew member has lost and will lose in the future, the age of the crew member, and the amount of medical treatment required in the past and likely be required in the future.

Don’t Wait to Get Help After an Injury

If you or a loved one suffered a cruise ship related injury, it is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible. Once you disembark, your next step should be to get experienced legal help from a knowledgeable attorney.
At The Michael Brady Lynch Firm, our lawyers have decades of experience helping injured people get justice and full compensation for injuries caused negligence. Given that lawsuits against cruise ships are in a venue favorable to the cruise lines, it is incredibly important to have an experienced attorney with ample resources to prosecute your claim. The Michel Brady Lynch Firm regularly takes on the largest corporations in the world with a track record of proven success and results. Contact The Michael Brady Lynch Firm today, and our attorneys will review your case for free and help you protect your rights. For your complimentary consultation, call our office now.

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