A number of photographs and videos have been posted on the internet showing the large wave which hit the Louis Majesty cruise ship.
We reported on this story in prior articles: Monster Waves Hit Louis Majesty Cruise Ship and President of International Cruise Victims Questions Cruise Passenger Safety – Louis Cruise Lines No Stranger to Disaster .
The wave and wind conditions at the time of the incident should have clearly alerted the officers on duty to warn the passengers to secure themselves in their cabins. The Master should have instructed the passengers to keep away from the public windows, particularly at the vessel’s bow. The cruise ship was heading directly into the waves and those passengers killed and injured were particularly vulnerable in the public areas at the bow.
All cruise ships have what are called "safety management systems" (SMS) or "safety and quality" (SQM) protocols which address how the vessel should be operated in rough weather and the type of precautions which should be considered to protect the passengers. It will be interesting to see what type of safety procedures the cruise ship had, and whether the vessel’s officers ignored them.
CBS News has a video (below) depicting the wave striking the ship’s bow (the ship in the video is the "Norwegian Majesty") and describing the panic aboard the cruise ship:
The "Louis Majesty" used to be NCL’s "Norwegian Majesty" and, before that, the "Royal Majesty" operated by Majesty Cruise Lines from 1992 – 1997. Long before I began representing passengers and crewmembers, I represented Majesty Cruise Lines (around 1995) when this cruise ship was based in Miami. I have been on this ship and in the area where the glass blew out. The Royal Majesty was considered a large cruise ship 20 years ago.
Video CBS News