Multiple news stations are reporting today that a passenger from the Carnival Sensation cruise ship was fatally injured while in a serious accident involving a jet ski rented during a port call in Nassau.
A second passenger sustained injuries and is recovering at a hospital in Nassau.
Carnival states that the cruise passengers rented the jet ski directly from a local vendor. The U.S. Department of State has the following warning about water sports rentals in the Bahamas:
"The water sports and scooter rental industries in The Bahamas are not carefully regulated. Every year people are killed or injured due to improper, careless, or reckless operation of scooters, jet-skis, and personal watercraft or scuba/snorkeling equipment. Visitors should rent equipment only from reputable operators, and should insist on sufficient training before using the equipment. There have been reports that some operators do not actually provide insurance coverage even when the renter opted (and paid) for insurance coverage. Visitors should insist on seeing proof that operators have sufficient medical and liability insurance."
Carnival flew a "care team" from Miami to provide assistance to the passengers’ families. Carnival issued a statement: "All of us are deeply saddened by this event and extend our heartfelt condolences to the families and loved ones of those involved."
May 10th Update:
Accident like this are not isolated incidents. BahamasB2B.com has the following story entitled "Another Bahamas Tourist Dies on a Jet Ski:"
"The continued failure of the Bahamas government to enforce jet-ski regulations might possibly be viewed as criminal negligence.
A female tourist from the United States died in a horrific jet-ski accident in Nassau Harbour around 5:00pm on Saturday.
The 27-year-old woman from Florida, and a male companion also in his late 20s, had rented a jetski after arriving in Nassau on a Carnival Cruise ship.
The pair was riding the jet-ski in Nassau Harbour when they crashed into a boat near the entrance of the harbour, off the Montagu Foreshore.
Despite efforts by paramedics, the woman died almost immediately upon arriving at the hospital.
Her male companion is in serious condition after suffering head injuries.
Police investigations are underway as police try to figure out who was actually driving the jet-ski, where they acquired the vehicle and the circumstances leading up to the deadly accident.
Concerns over the dangers of jet-skis and other watersports have been ignored for years by the Bahamas Government, depsite numeorus deaths and serious injuries.
There is a poorly enforced law that requires jet-ski operators to provide a 15-minute training session to anyone interested in renting a jet-ski. However, that is rarely done and never enforced.
The names of the victims have not yet been released."
You can read about other jet ski accidents in the Bahamas here.
"Jet Ski Operators Defend Industry After Death" explains some of the problems with renting jet skis in the Bahamas.