When you set sail aboard a Carnival “Fun Ship” you tend to let your guard down. You may drink a little (or a lot) more than usual, talk to strangers, explore unfamiliar territories, and get into all sorts of sticky situations you probably wouldn’t back home. However thrilling it is to be on a fantasy holiday on the high seas, it’s still real life and sometimes sh*t happens. Only a fraction of cruise ship incidents are ever publicized, so no doubt there is more happening on these “floating cities” than most of us are aware of. Here are some assorted crimes, mishaps and situations that have occurred on Carnival Cruise Lines in recent years that you won’t read about in the glossy brochures. Note, this is not meant to malign Carnival in particular or the cruising industry in general. The vast majority of cruisers enjoy their voyages unscathed. However, it doesn’t hurt to be aware of the kinds of incidents that can occur so you can keep your wits about you.
1. Lawsuit for Falling Overboard on the Carnival Destiny
In October 2012, 31-year-old Sarah Kirby was enjoying a five-night voyage through the Caribbean when everybody’s worst shipboard nightmare happened. After a night of reveling over a few cocktails, she lost her balance, fell off her balcony and plunged about 100 feet into the dark waters below. She actually lived to tell the tale, and was rescued after spending two hours adrift at sea. That’s not the real shocker, though. Rather than offering kudos to Carnival for saving her life, Kirby turned around and sued them for the incident, claiming that they not only took too long finding her, but they were also somehow responsible for pushing Long Island ice-teas on her by offering $5 casino incentives per drink purchase. We have the utmost sympathy for the pain and suffering she sustained during this horrific ordeal, but we can’t really fault Carnival for this one. Nobody forced her to become so intoxicated that she managed to flop over the regulation 42-inch-high railings – a feat that takes considerable effort. Like a spokesman said, “At some point, personal responsibility has to enter into the picture.”