As you whistle your way down the gangway, ready to experience one of many exciting shore excursions during your cruise, it’s easy to forget that a wrong move could lead to serious accidents. Finding yourself on the wrong end of a mistake could spell disaster for your holiday getaway. Thankfully, you can check cruise ship accident attorney here for assistance.
Cruise ships offer a variety of recreational activities throughout their itineraries, ranging from scuba diving and fishing to sightseeing tours and zip-lining through tropical forests. Even so, some passengers let the excitement override their sensible judgment, leaving them vulnerable to serious accidents. Some common mistakes that can lead to cruise ship injuries during shore excursions include:
1. Disregard for Safety Instructions
“Yeah, right…that’s not going to happen to me.” You mumble in response to the safety instructions before participating in a shore excursion. But no matter how confident you may feel, not adhering to the rules could put you and the rest of the participants in danger. Many people suffer serious injuries due to their lack of compliance with safety instructions.
2. Going it Alone
While cruise ships advise their customers to reserve their shore excursions via a tour operator, some passengers opt for independent shore excursions. Although it might be cheaper to do it alone, it could be riskier.
And should the unexpected happen, the cruise operator may avoid liability by claiming you went against their terms and conditions. Moreover, dealing with a foreign entity can be challenging, especially when seeking legal recourse onshore.
3. Skimping on Small Details
Tour operators know their passengers are more interested in the experience than in the minute details. So, what do they do? They include disclaimers in their fine print relating to shore excursions.
And you guessed it – most people overlook them. Consequently, you may be unaware of the risks associated with a particular excursion or activity. This could expose you to dangers you are unprepared for, leading to injuries. And while some waivers are necessary to indemnify the tour operator, others might be too broad – implying you can take legal action.
Go over the fine print carefully and weigh the risks before participating in sea excursions. In so doing, you can minimize the chances of suffering cruise ship accidents. Besides, you’ll know the tour operator’s limitations should things go awry.
4. Relying on Inexperienced Tour Guides
Even if you have an experienced and knowledgeable tour guide, there is no guarantee you’ll have a safe and pleasant excursion. Still, tour guides can be unfamiliar with the terrain or lack experience leading excursions. Consequently, a guide’s lack of knowledge may put tourists in harm’s way.
And while it’s not your responsibility to vet the guides, you can ask questions to check their competence. For instance, you can inquire about the guide’s experience. That said, it pays to listen to their instructions and comply with safety protocols during the excursion. After all, they probably know the terrain better than you do.
5. Jumping Headlong into Dangerous Excursions
Marketers of shore excursions are always out to make a sale, and they’ll do anything to convince you a tour is safe, exciting, fun, and attractive. Unfortunately, they’re usually not forthcoming with the actual risks involved.
The result? You may find yourself on a harder-than-expected or hazardous excursion. So, be aware – research the excursion before booking it to determine its suitability based on your fitness level. And before signing up for that adrenaline-pumping activity, consider any pre-existing medical condition you may have and whether it may put you at risk of serious injury. In short, ensure your capabilities match the activity before participating.
Also note that regulations in other countries may be more relaxed than in the US, meaning a supposedly safe activity may be more hazardous than it looks. For instance, equipment maintenance standards may be lower or safety measures lax. If you use faulty or ill-maintained scuba equipment, it could lead to an error in judgment and result in disaster. So, weigh the risks before taking the plunge.
Safety is paramount when embarking on a shore excursion. Whether you’re embarking on your first or tenth tour, don’t let the lure of an adventure override your sense of caution. Take the necessary precautions to ensure you have a safe and enjoyable experience. But if you get injured while playing by the rules, rope in a cruise ship accident attorney to help you seek legal relief.