Numerous news sources are reporting that a Celebrity Cruises’ crew member went overboard from a cruise ship sailing off of the coast of Mexico.

Crew member Inyoman Bagiada, age 45, reportedly disappeared from the Celebrity Constellation at around 2:30 AM today, according to a press release by the U.S. Coast Guard. He was employed on the cruise ship as a cook.

The Constellation was returning from Cozumel, Mexico, to Port Everglades, Florida, after a five-day cruise. The incident reportedly occurred between Mexico and Cuba.

Celebrity Constellation Man OverboardThis is the sixth cruise ship disappearance in the last 5 weeks.

Royal Caribbean and sister company Celebrity have recently lost 4 people overboard. In addition to this latest overboard, people went overboard from the Rhapsody of the Seas, Adventure of the Seas and Independence of the Seas

Royal Caribbean is one of the cruise lines which is in violation of the 2010 Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act (CVSSA) which requires the installation of automatic man overboard systems. Four years ago Congress passed the CVSSA nto law, over the cruise industry’s objections, most cruise lines have not installed the required systems.

What typically occurs is that a person goes overboard without anyone seeing the passenger or crew member.  The cruise ship then sails on, often for many hours. Eventually the person’s absence is noticed, but the ship is many miles away. At that point the cruise ship will notify the Coast Guard, which must then search vast areas of the ocean at the cost to U.S taxpayers of $1,000,000.

The Coast Guard sent a HC-130 Hercules aircraft Clearwater, Florida and the Charles David Jr., a 154-foot cutter from Key West. 

A man overboard system would result in an immediate notification of the person going overboard and a rapid search and rescue. Sending Coast Guard airplanes and vessels from long distances away could be avoided with the man overboard systems. Lives could be saved which are now being lost.

Royal Caribbean experienced 8 crew members going overboard from its fleet of ships in less than 2 years between January 2011 and October 2012. You can read about those cases here.

It’s my belief that unless the cruise lines face steep fines, or are responsible for paying for the Coast Guard’s search, they will continue to flaunt the law.  

January 30 2014 Update: The Daily Mail reports that "according to the Coast Guard, the cruise did not report Bagiada missing until eight hours after he fell overboard." 


Have a thought about this issue? Leave a comment below or join the discussion on our Facebook page. 

Photo Credit of Celebrity Constellation – Wikipedia / Megadri   

  • Dumbfounded

    My thought is, that Congress’ inaction to enforce the law, makes it appear that they are now being “bought off” by the cruise industry lobbyists to not enforce the law. Apparently, those in Congress don’t realize that their lack of action to enforce the law, has been noticed. So, if they are being “influenced” by the cruise industry lobbyists to not enforce the law, then whatever “influence” they receive would be tantamount to “blood money” wouldn’t it?

  • About one year ago I joined the Man Overboard business through the importation of a unique MOB device from Australia. Although being around the water all my life I was not aware of the severity of the MOB problem on cruise ships. I receive automatic updates on all the activity and it is astounding. I came across the Association of Cruise Ship victims in my travels and all the work they have done to try and reduce the deaths from this problem. The slow implementation of the infra red detection system is sad to see. If ever these systems come to be then the second half of the equation is quick recovery. Within seconds of a MOB and the ship motoring, the swimmer becomes a needle in a haystack.With the time it takes to turn a ship around there is almost no chance they will spot the swimmer. The product I market is taking MOB marking by storm in the US for recreational boating and offshore yacht racing. The SOS Dan Buoy is the quickest and easiest marker to deploy and upon automatic inflation when hitting the water becomes a 7′ high Day Glow pole with SOLAS strobe light. It provides buoyancy to the swimmer and many other features. It can be seen at When an MOB alarm sounds one of these should instantly be deployed so the MOB can be easily spotted.

  • steven

    On ship they don’t have straight duty, in the middle crew have wake up n come again for duty,these is not right,first onwards we not getting sleep well ,secondly supervisor putting pressure ,and home problems..that time mind getting nervous ..n they doing these type of nonsense …..pls royal carrabien make some difference for future all cruises gets smoothly thank u…

  • purplemaitai

    these numbers of “man overboard” incidents are always peaked around christmas and new years , yes i understand money talks but why is that no one asking the question WHY ARE THEY JUMPING OVERBOARD. what is goingon? i work on a cruise ship and have been for almost 4 years and yes its tough sometimes emotionally especially when you miss home and the norms of everyday life. There are 2 things to do onboard, drink and work…. some departents have it harder than others and not every day is an easy day for some. im thinking maybe they should have some sort of “vent” im not saying psychologists but maybe an outlet that is confidential for crewmebers to discuss how they feel about things and maybe even help deal with issues of every day ship life. i have alot more to say on this topic but ill leave on this note… yes it cost people money when someone “jumps” but lets think about what this person is thinking and why he did it. what could be so bad that t was easier to take his own life….

  • Gary Johnson

    “in violation of the 2010 Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act (CVSSA) which requires the installation of automatic man overboard systems. Four years ago Congress passed the CVSSA into law”…..
    If there is a breach of the law, such as you have outlined, where are the natural consequences as required by the new law? The problem is, the new law was written without any teeth. The consequence needs to be THE SHIP DOES NOT SAIL for “X” amount of weeks/months. Plus, the company is fined. Plus, the company must pay restitution to the family. Most of the cruise lines, know they are untouchable and will never suffer any significant reprecussions.

  • israeli

    what is the automatic man overboard system?
    how does it works?

    I have worked in this company for 8 yrs as CSO up to 2011
    and never heard anything about this system.

  • gregory

    Apparently this crew member had personal problems at home, the wife just passed away and the company declined to pay his returning ticket because on celebrity you either pay your own ticket or resign but still have to pay your ticket and salaries are very low so the money is not enough, life on ships is not easy for anybody except for those with 3 stripes and above who just know how to put pressure on crew members

  • anak agung gede agung

    this issue it not new on the cruise ship business.. almost all cruise lines company they treat the crew member like shit..specially the low class crew position they work them like horse..and the agent that recruit them in they own country never do anything about this issue…

  • Joel R

    The company should paid more attention!!! Is crazy the way the crew work if terrible the way they take advantage of the crew, some times they work more than 13 hours per day, they don’t have any day off, and they make longer the contracts cause the company only wants to paid one ticket per year, for the crew, the salaries are terrible!! The law should do something this is ridiculous. Take care they are humans not animals!!!

  • Mr Cook

    Unfortunately I’m my almost three years working in two diferent companies I had to see so much Bs, specially in food production department. Working for 15 hours straight without any brake like I used to work, 10 or 8 months contracts with unbelievable salarys starting from 650 usd per month, you have to pay your first flight tickets, and if you resign you pay also flight tickets for repatriation and a security guard who escort you from the ship to the airport. So if you make some math, and you work for six months and you resign. You will finish even owning money to that company. There is a lot of bad things about this jobs, and even when you complain absolutely nothing change. Maybe that’s the reason for to hire Filipinos and indianos. They just don’t complain because there is not so much to do in them country’s.
    I hope to see one day a real change in the Cruises industry.
    For now I’m very proud to say that I survived all that time and there is no chance for to see me working in one of this modern slavery jobs.

  • Vic C

    I read this with much reservation. An article by a lawyer who fights case against the cruise lines…a little biased I believe. People who answer were all in conflict and/or unhappy with their jobs in the industry. True the job is hard and true the pay is minimal but the employees took the job and knew the pay amount. There needs to be some changes in the industry and perhaps one may be the detection device, but not at all fair to blame all on the cruise lines.

  • I Made Patera

    As part of the family, we are very upset with the ways this is handled. It has been 11 days since the incident, we did not receive any official news either from the agents, the cruise company, nor from the local authority. With this modern technology anything could be done within seconds. We, must search the agents to find out what is happening until finally on the 10th days (7th February 2014 I was able to meet the agents and the local authority. We are talking about human being, his wife and the two grown up boys. The way how this is handled is not human. What about his compensation of many years working for the ship.

  • L.A.Magturo

    My condolences to the family and loved ones of that crew. May the lord blessed his soul. To the family and loveones pls be strong because our own family was also a victim of the same tragedy and I know how it feels, specially when the news are not enough , few whereabouts of what had happened. Maybe they wanted to be like that , there so many un answered questions just like what had happened to us.its very hard to asked specially when your miles away where the tragedy happens. Again my prayers to the grieving loveones..

  • D. Acerra

    My Sister had a heart attack on this ship on 1/22/14 almost 4 hours after leaving Cozumel, on it’s way to Key West. They were not equipped to save her life, and instead of calling the coast guard or having her lifted to a US Hospital that would have been the fastest way to get her help, they turned the ship around and took her back to Cozumel which took a total of 5 hours, to a facility there that they were aware was also not equipped to save her life. Their intention was (according to the Medical Director) that IF she would survive the night, they would then fly her to a better facility! They never contacted her family to tell us what was happening, and they disembarked her to Cozumel with no one remaining at her side to speak the language or to witness her treatment. In less than an hour upon her arrival in Cozumel, she passed away. No one contacted us at all. We found out by researching the internet to find the Medical Facility, and calling them ourselves to find out her condition. Her life was in their hands, and they dropped her off in Mexico like she was a bag of garbage. They would nor release her body to us, until they received thousands of dollars, and even then, they put her on a cheap stop over flight, during a snow storm and she did not arrive home to us for over a week! Her luggage was tossed in lost luggage and arrived all broken up, 2 weeks later. Laws protect them, and there are no laws to protect the people who’s lives are in their hands. I do not know how the people who run this Cruise Line actually live with themselves, nor do I know how they sleep at night. I know I can’t anymore, thinking about my sister dying all alone at the hands of this Cruise Line