Cruise Law News has been told that a person allegedly went overboard from the Royal Caribbean Grandeur of the Seas as the cruise ship was returning from Bermuda to Baltimore earlier this week. 

The incident reportedly occurred around 3:00 AM late Wednesday night / early Thursday morning, August 7th.

According to a person on the cruise ship who wishes to remain anonymous, a state room attendant found a note when he entered the cabin on Thursday. The ship was searched, the CCTV Grandeur of the Seas cameras reviewed, and the overboard was eventually discovered.

The passenger was reportedly a U.S. citizen, 70 years old and traveling alone. The missing person alert was raised 12 hours or so after the overboard (from the CCTV review).

The cruise ship continued on to Baltimore. It didn’t go back. There appears to be no search.

If this information is accurate, it appears that the incident may have involved a suicide. However, it also illustrates that the cruise line has still not installed automatic man overboard systems as required by the Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act of 2010. The cruise safety law requires such technology regardless of whether the passenger or crew member intentionally jumped, accidentally went overboard, or was thrown into the ocean. 

There are lots of questions which remain unanswered. Did the captain of the cruise ship make any announcements?  Why didn’t the ship turn around much earlier and conduct a search? Did the cruise ship notify the U.S. Coast Guard?

We have written about people going overboard from the Grandeur before.  

Cruise expert Professor Ross Klein have documented 235 people (in addition to this one) going overboard from cruise ships since 2000. 

Are there passenger or crew members who have additional information to share?

Please leave a comment below or join, the discussion on our Facebook page.

August 10 2014 Update: This is the second overboard passenger from a Royal Caribbean cruise ship in the last two months who was not reported in the press or discussed in social media. Three weeks ago, we reported on a passenger who went overboard from the Splendor of the Seas. Fortunately the cruise line personnel quickly rescued him. You can read about that incident here


Photo Credit: Wikipedia / Citking

  • John Goldsmith

    What exactly is the device used in the Man Overboard System? If it something that is carried or worn, can the person just not take it off. Please explain what is involved for the system to operate. I have been on three cruises and I am going again. What am I supposed to look for?

  • A follow up question to that of John G. What is the cost to outfit a ship to comply with the Man Overboard system? Does the system involve censors or other devices that are triggered in some manner? Thank you.

  • Jamie V

    Very sad if this story is true, always sad when someone decides to take their own life. Still not sure how the cruise line could have prevented this, or if these sensors would have made a difference.
    Have you ever checked the statistics on how many people kill themselves in hotels? My ex worked for a major hotel chain and they had suicides there on a regular basis. People don’t want to kill themselves at home, don’t want their families to have to clean up, etc. so they do it in hotel rooms. Should they have cameras and sensors too? Or do you just go after cruise lines?

  • And you hope

    And you hope this isn’t a case where the old man had some money so someone decides to off him by pushing him overboard (similar to the George Smith case or the case where the crew member waited on the balcony for the woman who dissed his mother and he raped her and tried to throw her overboard). Can’t tell much from the reports so I’m assuming he must have had an inside cabin and the CCTV show him jumping from an outside public area?

  • Cruise Crew

    It’s a camera system that records 24/7. It detects movement either through laser beams being broken or types of motion detectors. That’s the theory anyway. Birds, towels, people, random stuff can all set it off so lots of false alarms.

  • John Goldsmith

    I’m going to side with Jim here on this one. I did a bit of research and made a couple of calls. The systems that exist or are being developed are all camera and/or sensor reliant. Beams similar to security beams are placed strategically on areas of high risk.All of the cameras and sensors are tied into a computer system that is programmed to scan the system in a process that completes the scan of every device in microseconds. Lighting system also utilize the similar technology and these are not cheap. However, new designs and all new construction of vessels could incorporate the design..
    It will be interesting to see what develops.

  • Mary Jo Wiedenhoeft
  • Mike G

    I was also on this ship from August 1st to the 8th. I was not aware this event occurred while on the cruise, and only found out about it from the post on this website. I don’t believe any passengers were aware that this occurred. The only thing that may have piqued passengers’ curiosity was a series of announcements made approximately 15 minutes apart starting at around 2 pm on Thursday. We were in the art auction at the time, and the auctioneer’s microphone would automatically cut off when the captain came over the announcement system. The announcement was for a person (I remember it was a man’s name) to please immediately check in with any crew member. This was repeated about 3 or 4 times within the hour, and did seem unusual. I thought it was probably a situation where someone had gotten separated from a group, or possibly a person with dementia who had ventured out on his own (similar to a silver alert). It did not even occur to me that it could be a man overboard situation. But from the timeframe indicated, it would seem logical that the announcements were regarding this situation. It is quite disturbing. It’s horrible to think that this would happen.

  • Silvana

    Well this incident wasn’t at 3:00 am, this was at 23:15 hours (ish). The man committed suicide jumping from deck 10, he left several notes in his room, one of them stated the time and date when he killed himself. An stateroom attendant went to service the room, found the note and reported it, there were several announcements trough the PA system trying to locate this man, meanwhile security was checking the cameras and found that the man jumped overboard the night before at 23:15 there were no eye witnesses at all, the man was cruising by himself so none realized he was missing until next day. For those ones asking why the ship didn’t turn around to search? I would recommend to use their common sense… if they found out that this incident had happened more than 14 hours later, to go back to search it would have taken some other several hours just to find nothing, because no one survives jumping from deck 10 in the middle of the ocean at the age of 70 being more than 14 hours. Turning the ship around would have meant that more than 2000 passengers would have arrived late to Baltimore, miss the flights, miss a day working and so on… Doing announcements advising people that one guy went over board would have created panic among the passengers all of this what for??? to feed the curiosity of the people??