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The hidden dangers aboard cruise ships

Have you ever been on a cruise? The cruise ships are amazing. There are spas, gyms, comedy clubs, parades, water parks, movie theaters and 24-hour pizza and ice cream available. With over 3,000 passengers and 1,000 crew members, it’s truly a floating city. However, like any other city, there’s crime.

There’s a hidden danger aboard the cruise ships, though with all the ingredients being there—abundant alcohol, a less vigilant mentality and no law enforcement—maybe we shouldn’t be surprised. Cruise ships can be dangerous. Even Carnival, which operates the world’s biggest cruise lines, said in a court filing: the “ticket contract makes absolutely no guarantee for safe passage, a seaworthy vessel, adequate and wholesome food, and sanitary and safe living conditions.”

Breaking down the crimes

Of the 106 alleged cruise line crimes reported for 2017, 76 were sexual assaults. That’s a stunning percentage—nearly 72 percent. Here’s how the crimes broke down:

  • Homicide: 1
  • Suspicious death: 2
  • Missing persons: 4
  • Kidnapping: 1
  • Theft of more than $10,000: 8
  • Assault with serious injury: 13
  • Sexual assault: 76

Many assault victims are under 18

NBC News had a report that said many of the sexual assaults involved minors. A 2013 congressional report found that minors were victims in roughly a third of assaults.

Keeping your family safe

Of the ten cruise line companies in the 2017 reports of alleged crimes, Carnival had 46 out of the 106 total crimes. That’s over 43 percent. In contrast, Celebrity and Disney had just seven crimes total between the two cruise lines. No matter which cruise line you book for your next vacation, keep an eye out for your family members, especially your children. Don’t let the abundance of alcohol diminish your responsibility to protect yourself and your family.

If you’re a victim

Should you or a loved one fall victim to a crime on a cruise ship, consult with an experienced maritime attorney. Don't let the cruise liner staff convince you that being a victim of crime is simply a matter of being at the wrong place at the wrong time.

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