Passengers on crippled Carnival ship seeking $5,000 a month for - New York News

Passengers on crippled Carnival ship seeking $5,000 a month for life

Posted: Updated:
The Carnival Dream cruise ship in 2010. (Carnival Cruise Lines photo via AP) The Carnival Dream cruise ship in 2010. (Carnival Cruise Lines photo via AP)
By FOX NEWS - A group of passengers suing Carnival Corp. for damages after sailing on the ill-fated Carnival Triumph cruise ship that drifted at sea for days are asking the company to pay $5,000 a month for the rest of their lives for ongoing medical and mental problems.

The case stems from the February 2013 incident when a fire broke out in the ship's engine room during a four-day cruise, leaving the ship without engine power and most of its electricity, forcing passengers to endure human waste running down hallways, limited water supplies, noxious odors and extreme heat.

After about five days in the Gulf of Mexico, the ship was finally towed to Mobile, Ala., and Carnival sought to make amends by offering each passenger a $500 check, a voucher for a future cruise, refunds of most on-board expenses and reimbursement for transportation, parking and other expenses.

Many of the 33 passengers involved in the trial complain of lingering emotional issues such as PTSD, anxiety and depression; some have physical ailments they blame on squalid conditions, including leg pain, diarrhea, upper respiratory problems and even aggravated hemorrhoids.

READ MORE


Most of the passengers are seeking $5,000 in damages a year from Carnival for the rest of their lives, claiming they will need continuous medical monitoring because of what happened aboard ship. They want the money in lump sums based on government tables estimating their life expectancies.

One of the plaintiffs, Debra Oubre, 59, told Reuters she has experienced panic and anxiety attacks since the cruise, and also blames the voyage for a urinary tract infection.

"It was chaotic. People were in dire need of help," Oubre said. "We were standing in line for food for five hours."

In a statement to Reuters, Carnival Corp. said that while it recognizes its guests experienced uncomfortable conditions, all passengers returned safely and were provided with a full refund.

"This is an opportunistic lawsuit brought by plaintiff's counsel and plaintiffs who seek to make a money grab," a company spokeswoman said.

Carnival attorney Curtis Mase has asked Senior U.S. District Judge Donald Graham to reject all of the damage claims. In court papers, Mase said the passengers either haven't proved their health issues are linked to the Triumph cruise or haven't shown they suffer from any lingering problems at all.

The passengers, Mase wrote, "are not entitled to damages simply for experiencing the conditions on the vessel." And, he added, "they failed to prove that Carnival's conduct was the legal cause of the injury."

Judge Graham, who is hearing the case without a jury, has ruled that passengers cannot collect punitive damages and may only get damages for past and future medical costs that are conclusively linked to what happened on the Triumph.

Reuters reported that Graham already dealt a major blow to the cruise line by ruling that the engine catching on fire is proof alone of negligence on Carnival's part.

"It would seem rather obvious that ships shouldn't just catch fire and then have fire suppression systems that don't work," Robert Peltz, a Miami maritime lawyer, told the news agency.
  • Local NewsLocal NewsMore>>

  • Notes with swastikas and 'Uber' found in Brooklyn

    Notes with swastikas and 'Uber' found in Brooklyn

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 10:05 PM EDT2014-09-17 02:05:20 GMT
    The NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force is working to track down whoever posted dozens of stickers and fliers with swastikas and the word "Uber" in Brooklyn. The stickers and flyers filled with images of hate were placed outside a Jewish boys' school on Bedford Avenue in Brooklyn. A Shomrim safety patrol spotted the stickers on the sidewalk and in the gutters, police said.
    The NYPD Hate Crimes Task Force is working to track down whoever posted dozens of stickers and fliers with swastikas and the word "Uber" in Brooklyn. The stickers and flyers filled with images of hate were placed outside a Jewish boys' school on Bedford Avenue in Brooklyn. A Shomrim safety patrol spotted the stickers on the sidewalk and in the gutters, police said.
  • Bratton: Islamic State group threat expanding

    Bratton: Islamic State group threat expanding

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 8:43 PM EDT2014-09-17 00:43:17 GMT
    New York City has entered a "new era" of potential terror threats as hostilities between the United States and extremists from the Islamic State group intensify, Police Commissioner William Bratton said Tuesday. Bratton told reporters that there is no current information pointing to a specific threat against the city.
    New York City has entered a "new era" of potential terror threats as hostilities between the United States and extremists from the Islamic State group intensify, Police Commissioner William Bratton said Tuesday. Bratton told reporters that there is no current information pointing to a specific threat against the city.
  • High-fiving strangers in NYC

    High-fiving strangers in NYC

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 6:01 PM EDT2014-09-16 22:01:29 GMT
    Looking for a taxi cab is a common sight in the city. For some people, an outstretched arm is usually the sign for hailing a cab. A few other folks see it as something else.Meet Meir Kalmanson. He sees a hand in the air as an opportunity to lighten up a person's serious or frantic state. Meir decided to high-five his way down Fifth Avenue. The video of his rebellion of social norms has gone viral.
    Looking for a taxi cab is a common sight in the city. For some people, an outstretched arm is usually the sign for hailing a cab. A few other folks see it as something else.Meet Meir Kalmanson. He sees a hand in the air as an opportunity to lighten up a person's serious or frantic state. Meir decided to high-five his way down Fifth Avenue. The video of his rebellion of social norms has gone viral.
Powered by WorldNow
Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | New Terms of Service What's new | Ad Choices