Multiple news sources are reporting that a passenger went overboard from a cruise ship in the Mediterranean Sea yesterday. Little information is being released except that the passenger is described as a "British woman" and is apparently in her seventies.
The incident occurred on the Aurora cruise ship as it sailed from the Oporto, Portugal to to Barcelona, Spain. The news accounts state that the woman "fell" although there is no real description whether she jumped, or was thrown overboard, or she somehow fell into the water.
Cruise ship overboard cases are rarely solved. In this case, there is no real information being released to explain what happened.
The Telegraph newspaper in the U.K. quotes a passenger saying that "we heard that the woman is 72 and was on holiday with her daughter but we don't know how she fell in. The passengers are all very sad and subdued as the outlook doesn't look good. The sea is very choppy. We are just so concerned for this woman and her family. It is awful."
P & O states that "the ship's crew were alerted and ordered an immediate search of the area," although cruise lines often say this when it's not true. There is no information when the woman was reported missing and when the search was initiated.
Investigations fall to the flag state which for P & O cruise ships is Bermuda. That country has a dreadful record conducting investigation involving overboard passengers and crew members or crimes on cruise ships at sea.
According to cruise expert Professor Ross Klein, this is the 188th person overboard from a cruise ship in the last decade or so.
The last cruise ship passenger overboard from a cruise ship was 2 weeks ago when a 21 year old passenger disappeared from Royal Caribbean's Allure of the Seas.
The cruise ship had left Southampton on Wednesday September 26th and was sailing on a 14 day cruise.
Anyone with information about this latest overboard, please leave a comment below.
September 29 2012 Update: A comment to this article below states that the passenger committed suicide, although this cannot be confirmed.
Aurora Web Cam: P & O Cruises
Aurora cruise ship photo: SOLVENT via Telegraph