CNN reports that a British cruise passenger was killed during rough weather which struck a ship sailing into the English Channel.

The death occurred aboard the Marco Polo cruise ship.

The cruise line tried to characterize the death as a result of a freak accident. The incident was described as a result of a “freak wave” according to a statement released Friday by the ship’s owner, Cruise & Maritime Voyages. It is quite common for cruise operators to say that a “freak wave” was the problem, rather than admitting that the sea conditions were foreseeable and that the captain and officers failed to Marco Polo Cruise Shipwarn the passengers of the dangers inherent in the adverse sea conditions.

There was nothing “freaky” about the waves. The U.K. is being racked by severe weather which includes driving rain and gale-force winds.

One of the most popular videos we have ever posted is that of a wave smashing through a window and causing death and destruction. You can see that video here on our YouTube channel.  It has been watched around 1,500,000 times: “Wave Hits Louis Majesty Cruise Ship.”

CNN says that “one elderly passenger has died and a further passenger has been airlifted for further shore-side medical assistance.”

BBC News says that “water crashed through a window injuring several passengers. An 85-year-old man and a woman in her 70s were airlifted off the ship but the man later died.”

The ship was sailing from the Azores to its home port in Tilbury, England and was carrying 735 passengers and 349 crew members.

February 15 2014 Update1 Dead, 12 Injured: Pandemonium After Wave Breaks Window & Floods Cruise Ship Restaurant.


Photo Credit: Wikipedia / Luca Riva

  • J Christie

    Just out of interest – if a meteor were to hit a cruise ship at sea would you blame the resultant deaths on the master for not warning the passengers. What in God’s name does it matter whether the wave was a freak wave or a rogue wave or an unprecedented marine upheaval on a cosmic scale, the fact is it happened. And given that the ship had traveled from the Azores and was already in the English Channel having transited the Bay of Biscay, I would guess that everyone on board was only too well aware of the sea state by the time the incident occurred thereby rendering any warnings from the Master entirely superfluous.

  • Masters of vessels have a non-delegable legal duty to not only warn passengers of rough weather but to make certain that they are safely in their cabins and not in public places where windows can smash in and cause death and serious injury. The high waves were entirely predictable and hardly a meteor from outer space.

  • safety officer

    The term freak can be attributed to Cruise and Maritime Voyages PR. It should be noted that their chartered ship Discovery was impounded last year by a port authority in England for a number of days because of safety concerns, another ship they chartered up to last year mysteriously burned out in a Greek shipyard. It was named the Ocean Countess. What appears to have been a highly combustible ship whose fire could not be contained was in use By Cruise and Maritime up to the time she went to the shipyard last year. One should read reports of cruise critic on Marco Polo ship.

    It would appear that on the fatal Amazon trip several passengers had a virus and were isolated yet she immediately took on new passengers in Tilbury.