Passengers Terrorized: Norwegian Breakaway Sails through "Bomb Cyclone"

Norwegian Breakaway This week, a number of passengers contacted our office after returning from the harrowing end of their ill fated cruise aboard NCL's Norwegian Breakaway

News accounts indicate that on January 2, 2018, the Breakaway stopped at its private island, Great Stirrup Cay in the Bahamas. Videos available online show the weather, initially calm and pleasant, turning rough as the passengers used tenders to return to the cruise ship. This was a foreshadowing of things to come. 

By this date, and as early as December 31, 2017, weather forecasters were unanimously predicting that a huge storm would form off the U.S.'s southeast coast and head north later in the week.

But Norwegian Cruise Line (NCL) stuck with its itinerary and subjected the passengers to several days of extreme winds and waves as the hurricane-strength storm pounded the cruise ship on January 3rd and 4th. Water leaked into the ship as passengers complained on social media of panic and seasickness with several dozens of frightended passengers sleeping in the ship's atrium. CBS quoted one passenger as saying that "there were people crying, everyone was throwing up. It was a nightmare. It was so tilted I was shaking."

Many passengers complained about a lack of communication from the captain.  

NCL downplayed the incident which infuriated many of the traumatized passengers.

In one of several statements released by NCL after the Breakaway returned to port in New York, NCL claimed that the cruise ship "encountered stronger than forecasted weather conditions."  

The cruise line's conduct and lack of transparency are similar to the conduct of Royal Caribbean after the Anthem of the Seas cruised into a major storm which, like the Grayson "bomb cyclone," was well forecast in advance. The captain of the Anthem claimed that the storm was not accurately forecast, which led Al Roker, the popular television weatherman on the Today Show, to state "Royal Caribbean's claim that this was not predicted is bullfeathers."

Cruise lines ordinarily have a duty of only "reasonable care" under the circumstances. But in instances of rough weather, cruise lines have a much higher duty of care to the passengers. Some characterize this duty as the "highest duty of care" of the passengers when the ship is expected to encounter rough weather.

Our firm previously represented traumatized passengers on the Anthem of the Seas which Royal Caribbean recklessly sailed through a violent storm in 2016. You can see a video of my interview with a New Jersey television station here.  

Have a thought? Please leave a comment below or join the discussion on our Faceboook page. 

January 10, 2018 Update: Passengers Consider Lawsuit After Norwegian Cruise Line Sails Through Winter Storm Grayson (Video).  

Image credit: CBS News 

NCL Norwegian Breakaway Storm

Trackbacks (0) Links to blogs that reference this article Trackback URL
http://www.cruiselawnews.com/admin/trackback/324750
Comments (8) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
Simple Sailor - January 10, 2018 1:43 AM

Jim

So what would you have done as Master in that situation?

Kind regards

Kendra Duran - January 13, 2018 2:39 PM

I was on that cruise.

C Rudy - January 14, 2018 10:59 AM

I was on that cruise too. Terrible. No information from the captain at all. We were on our own. We want our money back, at least !

Frank - January 15, 2018 8:32 AM

The ship should have returned to Bahamas and waited out storm. I feel the Croatian Captain of the NCL Breakaway put the ship, crew and passengers in harms way. His reckless sailing (( North at 16+knots, 30+ ft seas and 55 knot wind)) injured passengers mentally and physically and also damage the ship. I would like to know who I can report this extremely reckless sailing too.
NSC ONLY DOES WORKPLACE & NTSB ONLY DOES AIRLINES.

Bob R. - January 16, 2018 5:38 PM

Cruise line are only concerned with their bottom lines at the distress and discomfort of their passengers. They hate to alter their itineraries as it will affect the schedules of their non-stop year round cruises. Even with so many incidents occurring on so many ships, they maintain a rock steady flow in order to prevent any losses of ships being disabled. Since each cruise represents large sums of money, the need to keep to their schedules overrides any passenger discomfort.It would take more than a storm or individual passenger problem to override the bottom line.

Bob R. - January 16, 2018 5:39 PM

Cruise line are only concerned with their bottom lines at the distress and discomfort of their passengers. They hate to alter their itineraries as it will affect the schedules of their non stop year round cruises. Even with so many incidents occurring on so many ships, they maintain a rock steady flow in order to prevent any losses of ships being disabled. Since each cruise represents large sums of money, the need to keep to their schedules overrides any passenger discomfort.It would take more than a storm or individual passenger problem to override the bottom line.

Simple Sailor - January 20, 2018 6:17 AM

Frank

The NTSB does do investigations into Marine incidents. Google El Faro.

Kind regards

Kamren Lyon-Toles - February 27, 2018 2:01 PM

I love the breakaway and the epic.

Post A Comment / Question Use this form to add a comment to this entry.







Remember personal info?