The Costa Concordia cruise liner ran aground off Italy’s Tuscan coast resulting, at the time of this posting, eleven deaths, 60 injuries and roughly 29 people still unaccounted for. The captain of the ship has been arrested and accused of abandoning the ship. According to CNN, three of the victims who lost their lives in the January 13, 2012, shipwreck were two French tourists and a Peruvian crewmember.
The ship had embarked from Civitavecchia near Rome on a trip that was scheduled to include stops at ports in France and Spain. The accident was reportedly due to a “reckless maneuver” involving the ship captain steering the cruise liner closer to the coast to allow passengers a better view of the island’s lights. The captain has been detained for abandoning ship and is accused of manslaughter and causing the ship to wreck.
People injured aboard the ship may want to consider pursuing legal action against Carnival Cruise Lines, which owns the Casta Concordia through a subsidiary company. You might be thinking, “Can people actually bring a claim against Carnival since it appears the captain was the at-fault party?” The answer is probably yes. There is a legal doctrine known as respondeat superior that makes an employer potentially liable for the actions of its employee whose negligent or irresponsible actions on the job cause an injury or death to another. Whether this doctrine is applicable depends on where a claim is filed. Another factor is the choice of law provision that is likely to be included in a form cruise passengers had to sign before boarding the ship.
As you can see, the legal process associated with a serious shiwreck or boating accident can be complicated. To learn more about laws related to injuries and wrongful deaths on the water, take a look at this free report written by an experienced boat accident injury attorney.