While negligence is ultimately determined through the completion of a lawsuit, it appears that Princess Cruises may have been negligent by:
- Failing to alert travelers that a person infected on the voyage before theirs had contracted the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)
- Failing to alert travelers that passengers on board the ship with them had also previously been on board a ship with a person who tested positive for COVID-19
- Failing to adequately sanitize ships after finding out that at least one passenger had been infected COVID-19
- Failing to be prepared for viral outbreaks (such as COVID-19 outbreaks) that arose on several Princess Cruises vessels
These are just some of the most blatant ways that Princess Cruises may have failed to protect paying customers and crew members, and why Princess Cruises could ultimately be guilty of negligence.
Defining Negligence With Respect to Cruise Ships
Negligence is when a party violates a duty of care they owe to another person. When it comes to determining negligence with respect to COVID-19 outbreaks on Princess Cruises vessels, the term “care” must be likened to keeping passengers safe from infection. Some actions that may represent “care” for passengers’ health include:
- Acting in the most cautious possible manner to ensure that new passengers are not boarding a vessel possibly or likely infected with COVID-19
- Having a comprehensive, actionable response plan in the case that a viral outbreak occurs on board a ship, whether it is in port or at sea
- Postponing cruises in order to thoroughly sanitize vessels on which a COVID-19 case has been identified
- If an active case of COVID-19 is identified while a ship is at sea, immediately ordering mass quarantine and taking other precautions to minimize the possibility of an outbreak
- Providing testing and medical care in a prompt, safe fashion
- Providing accurate, up-to-date metrics about infections to health officials on land so that the virus does not spread beyond the ship
Taking such actions could have prevented the outbreak on board Princess Cruises ships, or at the least may have reduced the ultimate scale of COVID-19 outbreaks. Instead, it appears that Princess Cruises exhibited a series of decisions and actions that may have put passengers, crew members, and others on land at risk of infection and death. These decisions may ultimately prove to be negligent.
Safety Failures By Princess Cruises
The case of Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess cruise ship may exemplify—more than any other vessel—the failures that may have endangered the health of those aboard the ship (and those who they would interact with once disembarking).
According to The Mercury News, the sequence of events which illustrates the possible negligence by Princess Cruises includes:
- The Grand Princess completes a trip from San Francisco to Mexico, with the journey commencing on February 21st, 2020
- On February 21st, the Grand Princess departs again (for Hawaii), carrying thousands of new passengers as well as approximately 50 or 60 passengers from the previous trip
- About a week later, a man from the San Francisco to Mexico voyage goes to the hospital, with his cause of illness being confirmed as COVID-19 on March 2nd
- It was not until March 4th that passengers aboard the Grand Princess were informed of the possible presence of COVID-19 on the ship itself, and within other passengers on the ship
This timeline leaves at least a two-day window between when the passenger’s illness was confirmed as COVID-19 and when passengers on the Grand Princess were alerted to the possible threat to their health. It also begs the question of whether staffers on board suspected (or should have known of) ill passengers before March 2nd.
In addition to the Grand Princess, Princess Cruises has:
- Had another ship, the Diamond Princess, be the site of a 700-person COVID-19 outbreak which was bashed as a “public health failure”, per Fox Business
- Had at least 3 cruise ships—the Grand Princess, Diamond Princess, and Coral Princess—experience significant COVID-19 outbreaks
- Acted questionably at virtually every stage of the relevant timeframe, with respect to COVID-19 emergence and outbreaks on board their cruise vessels
If you or your loved one has been impacted by the decisions of Princess Cruises’ leadership, then you may be entitled to compensation for your losses.
Victims are Holding Princess Cruises Legally Accountable
Princess Cruises are among the cruise lines facing allegations of negligence and mounting lawsuits, according to National Public Radio (NPR). These lawsuits allege that Princess Cruises may have been negligent because they:
- Exposed passengers to COVID-19 infection
- Are responsible for passengers who ultimately were infected
Even if you were not infected, you could have been exposed to an unreasonable level of danger by Princess Cruises. If you would like to explore your eligibility to join or start a lawsuit, then you can speak with a lawyer or their team, as they may:
- Conduct a free consultation
- Handle any legal action that you choose to pursue
- Defend your rights and pursue compensation on your behalf
Call Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers Today
We offer honest, personal representation. Our partners work directly with clients, and will do the same for you. Call our team at Chalik & Chalik Injury Lawyers today at (855) 529-0269 for a free consultation regarding your eligibility for a lawsuit against Princess Cruises or other liable parties.