Disclaimer: Note that the firm is no longer accepting cases for the anti-psychotic medication Abilify or Tylenol autism cases. Thank you.
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Cruise Ship Sexual Assault Prevention

The cruising industry is booming, with new cruise ships being built and sailing away from Florida ports each year. While cruising is a relatively safe vacation, unfortunately, things don’t always go as planned. Crimes happen on cruise ships, just as they do anywhere else. Sexual assault is the most common crime reported on cruise ships. In 2023, there were 131 reports of sexual assault and rape on cruise ships. Unfortunately, these numbers are likely low as sex crimes tend to be underreported. There are many things cruise lines and passengers can do to ensure their safety on cruise ships. Below, we discuss how to prevent sexual assault on cruise ships and how to hold responsible parties accountable.

Stay in Public Areas

The first way to ensure your safety on a cruise ship and avoid crimes like sexual assault is to stay in public areas. Crew members make up a large portion of suspects in sexual assault cases on cruise ships, and many of these crimes take place when a crew member brings a victim to a private area where they know there aren’t any security cameras.

Install More Security

Cruise lines are responsible for keeping their passengers safe. Cruise lines need adequate security measures, including hiring and vetting security personnel and installing security cameras. If the cruise line failed to provide adequate security that led to an attack, they could be liable for their negligence.

Lock Your Stateroom

One way sexual assaults are committed on cruise ships is when another passenger or crew member enters a victim’s stateroom. It’s imperative to take proper precautions to prevent crimes from taking place. Always lock your door (and make sure it’s clicked shut), even when you’re inside your stateroom. Never prop your door open, even if you only leave your room for just a minute. Keep your room key on you so you’re never tempted to keep your door propped open. Look for proper credentials from the cruise line if someone wants to enter your stateroom, and keep the door open while crew members are inside.

Don’t Wander the Ship Alone

Cruise ships are large vessels, so it’s easy to get lost. Always be aware of your surroundings and become familiar with the ship’s layout so you don’t unknowingly wander into a private area. This is especially important for teenagers and young adults. Most sexual assault victims on cruise ships are between 13 and 24 years old. While there are many places for teens to enjoy cruise ships by themselves, including teen lounges and entertainment facilities, you may consider having someone from your party meet them at the exit and walk them back to your stateroom. Don’t allow your teen to walk around the ship alone, especially at night.

 Adequate Hiring and Vetting Processes

One way cruise lines can protect passengers from crimes on cruise ships is to conduct thorough background checks and properly vet employees, including security personnel. The cruise line should also invest in adequate security measures like proper lighting, security cameras, and security guards throughout the ship.

Be Aware of Your Surroundings

No matter where you are, you should always be aware of your surroundings. This includes while vacationing on a cruise ship. If something seems off, get out of the situation immediately. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Know Your Rights

If you experience a crime like a sexual assault on a cruise ship, you have the right to hold your attacker and the cruise line responsible. It’s not your fault. The Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act (CVSSA) requires all cruise ships to have adequate medical staff, training, and reporting facilities so passengers can report crimes. While the cruise line may want to downplay the incident to prevent negative media coverage, you are entitled to hold your attacker and the cruise line responsible for their negligence.

Reporting Sexual Assaults on Cruise Ships

Seek medical attention as soon as you can after an incident. The CVSSA requires all cruise ships to have sexual assault forensic tests onboard. Getting this test done is an important part of your case. Ensure the incident is documented and a crime report has been created and filed. Cruise lines are required to report all crimes as a part of the CVSSA. Once you’re off the ship, contact an experienced personal injury attorney to represent you and hold the cruise line accountable for their negligence.

Get Compensation for Cruise Ship Sexual Assault

If you’re a victim of a sexual assault on a cruise ship, it isn’t your fault. You have the right to hold the responsible parties accountable. You could be entitled to compensation for your pain and suffering. The cruise industry must continue to enhance safety standards to ensure all passengers enjoy their vacations without fear of being a victim of a crime. If you or a loved one are a victim of sexual assault on a cruise ship, call our team at the Michael Brady Lynch Law Firm at 888-585-5970 to discuss your case. We’ll help you receive compensation for your injuries and emotional distress.

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