Passenger Death On Norwegian Cruises Lines' Epic Forces Cruise Ship's Return To Miami

The Miami Herald and CBS-4 are reporting that the NCL Epic cruise ship returned to port in Miami late last night shortly after leaving on a Caribbean cruise due to a medical emergency involving a passenger. 

The Miami Herald's article "Emergency Forces Cruise Ship's Return to Miami - Passenger May Have Died" stops short of stating that the passenger died.  But numerous on line sources are indicating that the emergency involved a passenger death. 

NCL Epic - Norwegian Cruise Line Epic - Cruise DeathThe newspaper's story is based on comments posted on what is described as a "popular cruising website" (probably  CruiseCritic.com).  The comments apparently suggest that a 21 year old passenger may have died due to an allergic reaction to something he ate.  A number of police officers boarded the cruise ship when it returned to port in Miami, and there is alot of speculation about what happened.   

There has been no information released by NCL, which adds to the speculation.  This cruise line public relations contacts are Susan Robison, vice president, corporate communications & media promotions (305) 436-4762 srobison@ncl.com, and AnneMarie Mathews, director, public relations (305) 436-4799 amathews@ncl.com.  

And its vice president of sales and passenger services, Andy Stuart, is a regular on Twitter @nclandy and tweeted non stop when the Epic made its inaugural voyage a few months ago. 

Cruise lines like NCL lose alot of credibility when the only time you hear from them is when they are selling cruises and they disappear when trouble strikes.  

Update:

A travel agent and blogger's website Chris Cruises has the following statement from NCL:

“After setting sail on a seven-day Eastern Caribbean cruise yesterday at approximately 4 pm, Norwegian Epic returned to the Port of Miami at approximately 12:45 am for a medical disembarkation. While the ship was approximately 40 nautical miles from Miami, a guest on board suffered a heart attack and passed away. All local authorities were notified and some met the ship upon arrival. The ship departed at approximately 2:45 am. Norwegian Cruise Line extends its sincerest thoughts and prayers to the guest’s family during this difficult time.”

Although the official NCL statement references a "heart attack," the FBI stated that the passenger had an allergic reaction to food.

A passenger on the cruise left a comment below that the passengers ate peanuts in a cookie.

The comments regarding the incident at Cruise Critic are here.   

The passenger has been identified as Kevin Edouard of Spring Valley, New York.

August 20 2010 Update:

A news station in Tampa reports that NCL confirmed that Mr. Edouard suffered a severe allergic reaction to peanuts: "Epic Passenger's Allergy Believed to be Peanut." 

August 23, 2010 update:

Passengers on the cruise are commenting that another passenger died and a brawl broke out during the cruise.    

Please leave a comment below if you are on the cruise or have information about what happened.

 

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Comments (27) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
anonymous - August 15, 2010 3:09 PM

I'm on that ship. I was having dinner when the captain on the PA announced there was a "medical emergency" around 9:00 pm and that we were returning to MiamI. That was all that we were told. I found out today that the person passed away on the ship. I also found out that the man was 24 and died because of a severe allergic reaction to peanuts. He ate a lot of cookies with the peanuts in them. It's very sad and this information hasn't been announced. I only know this because I asked a crew member. However, the atmosphere in the ship is still pretty light because I guess many people don't know about it yet.

A loving friend - August 17, 2010 11:49 AM

Kevin is 21 not 24 although we all wish he would have made it that far . . . he was a sweet loving kid and a friend to just about eveyrone in our town and a best friend to many of us, no one disliked Kev. He was sooooo excited about this trip and it sucks he never got to enjoy it. Keep his Mother and brothers n sisters in your prayers through this difficult time and his best friends and friends as well because we are all hurting. Fly Boy Kev we miss you man!! Until we meet again . . . . like you told us "The HAWK has landed . . ." RIP my sweet boy

an allergy mom - August 19, 2010 5:53 AM

I'm just wondering:

-Is NCL allergy aware and how do they deal with food allergies?

-What for does the medical attention on board take? Is the medical staff able to start an IV or intubate if necessary?

Is there a Doctor?

This is such a sad ending to what should have been a fun and exciting trip.

My condolences go out to the family and friends of this young man.

Diana Santa Maria - August 21, 2010 6:52 AM

I was on the cruise immediately before this one on the Epic - cruise to the Western Caribbean. Same ship. Very disturbing news. What was done to address the allergy? Was an epi pen available or even used? How quick was the response time? All eateries on ships should have the ability to call in emergency response medical help for a situation like this and all emergency medical access must have epi pens available for use. Has there been any updated information? The cruise ship should be returning today. Diana Santa Maria

Allergy passenger - August 21, 2010 5:48 PM

I was a passanger upon this cruse last week and I have very severe sea food and nut allergies. I would say that ncl is not very alergy aware they don't have an understanding of cross contamination they have signs out that say this food may contain nuts but what they are saying is that the are not taking into consideration the mixing of food especially in the buffet like not cleaning surfaces and putting food on top of each other. I had a mild reaction due to cross contamination. I was eating beans thank God it was mild because I was on my honeymoon. Our prayers are with this young boy and his family.

Alba Morales - August 21, 2010 11:00 PM

My Brother, sister-in-law, and nephews and niece;where
in this cruise.They told me the story wich I regret very much.But should this young man knowing he was allergic to some kind of food and eating them?.
I'm deeply sorry this hapenned, and my prayers go with his family. E.P.D. Sincerely, A. Morales

Anon - August 22, 2010 5:35 PM

There was a second death on this same cruise (aug 14-21, eastern carribean) At the last port of call, Nassau, friday, aug 20, the captain announced at approx 7 PM that we would be delayed by approx one hour because "a passenger needed to disembark." Shortly after the announcement, a hearse entered on to the pier next to EPIC and a covered body was rolled on a stretcher into the back of the hearse. I have no details what happened, but it was very errie. Half the boat was on their balcony (port side) watching the event but I have not been able to learn more about it.

Mike - August 22, 2010 7:11 PM

I was on the ship that week -(just last week) how very sad for the two that passed away - my prayers are with your and your families!

Sandy - August 22, 2010 8:35 PM


We were on this cruise also. We heard about the boy, but wasn't sure if it was acurate, I am so sorry for his family and friends.

We also saw the hearse drive away from the boat in Nassau, we were on the back of the ship. Heard it was a heart attack, but, I haven't been able to find out anything for sure.

There was also a fight after one of the shows on the ship.

Lisa - August 23, 2010 8:25 AM

We saw the hearse as well in Nassau. And we were at the show where the fight took place, sitting right in the middle of it. It went on for a long time, where was security?

Bill - August 23, 2010 11:36 AM

My wife and I were on the inaugural cruise of the Epic out of Miami on July 10, 2010. At the buffet breakfast first morning out she ate some food that she was not known to be allergic to. She stopped breathing and needed help with her prescription nebulizer. I asked one of the buffet supervisors (a woman in a white uniform) to call and get my wife some medical help - (by calling 911 or some emergency code). The lady just looked at me with a blank face, and did NOTHING.

I returned to my wife alone, only a few steps away, who had self administered the life saving dosage.

NO ONE (Medical or Security) was ever called by the NCL staffer, and the supervisor I spoke to never once came over to ask how my wife was doing. Needless to say, we never ate in the buffet for our next 7 days aboard, and did not let the incident disturb the rest of what turned out for us to be a very guarded trip. We were not surprised by the blogs we read here today or the coverups now exposed. Maybe the FBI should look further.

You would expect a well trained crew on a brand new ship worth hundreds and hundreds of millions, and carrying almost 6000 souls (guests and their own sailors).

NCL always finds ways to "penny pinch" - that is what they really call "free style cruising". It means if you are medically dying or being beat to death, it is up to you to survive alone and on your own at sea on their vessel. RIP the current victims, and the next tNCL Epic ravelers please be on your guard.

From 2 NCL Latitudes Platinum Members

Bobby - August 23, 2010 12:12 PM

This was my first cruise, and I was struck how all the staff started asking everyone if they had allergies before they would serve food at the dining rooms. It makes sense now.

The brawl happened right in front of me, after the comedy magic show. A young man (Late teens to early twenties) began to shout and yell at another about throwing his phone. He actually grabbed and began to choke him. People pulled him away, and his family was begging him to calm down. He pretended to calm down and then ran down to the front of the theater continuing to shout. An older gentleman began to shout and it looked like they threw a few punches at each other. The young man was then escorted out by employees.

I did not witness or hear anything about another death, and the announcements were quite different from the earlier ones about the death. Usually there are rumors about deaths, and I didn't hear anything about that from the workers I had befriended. I had assumed that the disembarkation was of this young man.

Lisa Okada - August 23, 2010 2:42 PM

I was on the Disney Wonder in Nassau on Friday. My daughter and I were on our cabin's deck directly in front of the hearse which was parked by the Norwegian Epic. The hearse pulled up and a body was taken out of the hearse and carried onto the ship. So, it appeared that someone passed away while in Nassau. Again, the body was put on the ship - not taken off of it. The senior staff of the Norwegian Epic were on their cell phones, etc. Everyone looked quite upset. The hearse was still there when the Disney Wonder pulled out of the dock. Our prayers are with the family.

bb - August 23, 2010 2:46 PM

There was another death on the ship in Nassau who was loved by many.

Didier Papon - August 23, 2010 8:56 PM

J'étais avec mon épouse sur l'Epic départ le 08/14/10
Après une annonce du speaker vers 19H, le navire est revenu à Miami pour débarquer un JH décédé.
Ensuite nous avons été témoin d'une altercation à la fin de la représentation du show Blue Man Group" le 08/16/10. Un jh a hurlé contre un monsieur d'un certain âge. Mais aucun coups n'a été portés
Le vendredi à l'escale de Nassau nous avons vu un corbillard venir près du bateau après que le commandant nous ait indiqué que nous partirions pour Miami avec 1 heure de retard. Il s'agissait d'un autre décès.

Disney cruiser - August 23, 2010 11:14 PM

I was in Nassau at the port enjoying the sunset on the top deck of Disney Wonder when I saw the Hurse pull up... I watched to see what was going on and I was horrified, I then noticed there were several passengers on their balconies watching as well. What a scary feeling, I cant believe there were two deaths within the same week, its crazy!! I was a little shaken up after seeing the body wheeled back on the boat, I mean i guess it happens.. I am so saddened by the fact that so much tragedy can come from an event that is supposed to be full of memories and fun time.

Prince - August 24, 2010 9:44 PM

I was on this ship as well. I thought it was amazing how AFTER the incident happen, I was asked by a worker if I were allergic to peanuts. I think that needs to be addressed BEFORE. While in Nassau my wife saw the hearse and was FREAKED out. My prayers are with those families as well. Hey Mike email me rivalinvst@yahoo.com, I have a question for you about the cruise.

Cruises Fan - August 27, 2010 9:50 AM

How tragic my thoughts go out to the family. Cant believe that NCL are not willing to make a comment. They must have an awful PR department if they dont understand the effect that this will have on their reputation. It seems they want to take your money but dont really want to look after you.

Tony - August 27, 2010 2:23 PM

i was on this cruise and are shocked almost a week later to find out there was a second death aboard the cruise i was on... in nassu the only announcement i herd was at dinner about a disembarkation of a passenger i have seen no artical about this post but are still searching.. But i was sad to here of the young man who passed away 4 hour into the cruise.. god bless his family

ship goer - August 27, 2010 5:17 PM

i was aboard this ship as well.
i give the families who lost their loved ones my condolences.

people with allergies need to be more aware, and have emergency procedures ready at all times. it is very unfortunate to happen on a vacation

Nige - September 8, 2010 3:05 PM

I can't believe the comments from some of you on here picking on RCI saying they should have broadcast loud and clear for all to hear that someone died on board their ship. Did you all want a tannoy announcement with the gruesome details?

Denis - September 11, 2010 12:06 PM

I just got off the ship today on Saturday, September 11, 2010 and I wasn't happy with the service a activities on board. Just to know that another person died on board again. I don't recommend this ship to anyone.

arron - October 6, 2010 4:46 PM

I was on board the week after the death of the young man with allergies. While on board, my mother fell out of her wheelchair and broke her arm. We were in the middle of nowhere, middle of the night...awful. The medical staff was amazing. They couldn't have been more careful, caring, and wonderful during the emergency. Their facilities were state of the art. As a matter of fact, they saved a mans life who had just had a heart attack the same evening that my mom was admitted to the facility. I sat with my mom for two days in that room and saw dozens of people come to the medical center. You wouldn't believe what those nurses and doctors deal with on that ship. I was shocked! They work around the clock dealing with serious medical emergencies, drunks at late hours, even babies who won't stop crying. It's shocking to see how much action that little place gets. You would have thought you were in a city hospital. Lucky to have them!

Bonnie - April 23, 2011 12:36 AM

I was on The Epic in November. I was very pleased with the accommodations, entertainment, and service. The ship crew was remarkable. I've been on other NCL ships and had the same type of experience. Unfortunately tragedies happen, and when you have that many people on a ship, accidents, medical emergencies, and even death is possible. Its very sad that two deaths occurred. However, it wouldn't be fair to blame NCL and completely discredit this cruise line and their staff. People with food allergies should always be prepared in public eateries and always be aware of what they are(or may be) putting in their mouths. Lots of cookies are made with nuts. So very unfortunate that this young man lost his life. At the same time, maybe he could have been more conscious of the risk he was taking. Very sad, and even hard to believe, that there were two deaths in one week on the same ship. But this does not in any way suggest that NCL neglects the well being of their passengers.

juan v vargas - March 1, 2012 3:22 PM

I am booked to the Epic for April 14 trasatlantic to Barcelona, after reading about the inccidents in the Epic My wife and I are a little concern about this trip I just ask God to guard and protect us all the passanger and crew for this trip,,

Claudio Soffhen - December 10, 2012 12:03 PM

hello to everyone, everybody stay calm and carry on this is my conffess:

i was i waiter at an restaurant whan i have heard from one of my partners in a city at the regions in a country at the region doing my way to gfet to know more about cruiselines and all the in fo above you`ve told tome.

I `ve renounced to this job when i knew tragicdal incidents at The Stella Maris or Norwegian Cruiselines these last years or last months that an Officcer at some of these ships died eventually very tragically as he related me paciently, and also shocked for me when he offered me to die if i was going to speak, now he has my laws over him and he is running away with no permission to go out of this country i cannot tell you,
does anybody know more about an officcer that died accidentally or strangely because they are a lot, or some accidents when a woman from Usa or Australia falled down into the sea or when many Sailors died because of the gas connected to the wc channels the gas without smell, red code please thank you,

all this info i have recived it from this man that adviced me to die in a restaurant of course now i am fighting them with lawyers or defending myself alone?

all kind of info please is needed urgently......

Best regards

Merry - April 22, 2013 4:24 PM

hey Claudio! Your comment is frightening me-i wanted to work for big cruise like Royal Carribean or NCL,but after your comment i am not really sure... what kind of information do you have? please write on lisapianist@yahoo.com

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