Passengers aboard the Carnival Liberty and a local news station in Houston are reporting that a thirty-three year old passenger went overboard early this morning. 

The missing passengers has been identified as Samantha Broberg who was initially reported missing by her traveling companions.

The Carnival cruise ship was apparently not equipped with a automatic man overboard system Missing Carnival Passenger Liberty Cruise Shipwhich should have alerted the bridge immediately when the young woman went over the rail so that immediate rescue measures could have been undertaken.

Carnival determined that she went overboard only after reviewing surveillance camera footage which "appears to show the woman going overboard around 2 A.M," according to a local ABC news channel in Houston. Previously, the crew engaged in the futile act of posting a photograph of the missing woman on the ship and conducting a search on the cruise ship. 

Carnival confirmed the overboard in a statement released to Houston station KHOU.

The Carnival cruise ship departed from Galveston on Thursday on a four-day cruise to Mexico.

Cruise lines may be unable to prevent overboards but there is reliable technology available to automatically detect and quickly respond to these type of emergencies. The cruise industry has come up with irresponsible reasons to delay the installation of the life-saving systems. One such system, the Mobtronic™ system, reportedly delivers more than 95% detection accuracy and low false alarm rates.  Such technology is required pursuant to the 2010 Cruise Vessel Security and Safety Act but most cruise lines refuse to install the technology due to costs. 

Professor Ross Klein’s site indicates that 270 people have gone overboard since 2000.

The last passenger to go overboard disappeared from Royal Caribbean’s Adventure of the Seas earlier this month.

May 15 2016 Update: A fifteen hour delay? ABC News says that there was a delay from when the passenger went overboard, at around 2:00 A.M., until 5:00 P.M. before the search was initiated.  An automatic MOB system would have obviously immediately notified the bridge, eliminating the fifteen (15) hour delay and increasing the chances of survival and a successful rescue.

Also the PR team at the cruise line is stating "based on the video analysis, we can confirm that it appears she climbed up and sat on a deck railing and subsequently fell backwards." Such conduct is foreseeable if someone is over-served alcohol.

Several people on our Facebook page are already blaming the passenger who many claim was intoxicated.  

My thought is that cruise lines owe a duty of reasonable care to passengers pursuant to maritime law. Cruise lines face potential liability if they over-serve alcohol to a guest past the point of intoxication and the guest is injured or killed. Carnival collects $500,000,000 a year selling alcohol on its cruise ships, plus it pays virtually no U.S. taxes. Its bartenders and waiters make greater gratuities the more Carnival booze they sell. On land, bars face liability when they over-serve people to the point that they become literally falling-down drunks. The same liability on cruise ships. Intoxicated guests acting foolishly are foreseeable, especially on cruise ships. Carnival encourages the drunkenness with all-you-can-drink packages. Carnival knows that people will become highly intoxicated but does not have reasonable policies to deal with the problem. Then it does not invest in the proven technology of automatic MOB systems to immediately alert the bridge when someone goes overboard.  It is a failure driven by the cruise line’s overarching priority to place profits over safety.

May 16 2016 Update: The authoritative gCaptain covers the story: Cruise Ship Passenger Safety In Focus After Woman Falls Overboard from Carnival Liberty.

May 19 2016 Update:  Photos by passengers have appeared on social media bringing into question what a half dozen Carnival officers were inspecting the day after the passenger disappeared. Carnival’s PR claims that the stains on the deck were from a spilled "red drink" and later said that it was from a "strawberry daiquiri." Another passenger pointed out what appears to be a broken light fixture lying on the deck. 

The Epoch Times picks up on the lack of an automatic man overboard system.

Have a thought? Please  join the discussion on our Facebook page.

Photo credit:  KVUE

  • Don Sayman

    here we go again.. as I have reported several times, most
    not all cruise ships have the MOB equipment installed. however the fact is no one looks at it. so it is worthless
    what is that old saying “you can lead a horse to water,
    but you cannot make him drink” please try to be more correct. tne U S congress mandated the equipment but cannot make anyone look at it. sorry….

  • Dale Berry

    When is this terrible situation compounded by the rich Cruise Lines being too irresponsible to purchase the available technology that by would have probably saved a multitude of lives and many more in the future. Now we have another beautiful young life lost at sea in a most horrible way to die. I worked at Disney Cruise Lines as a Security Officer for a number of years. All of Disney’s Vessels ( Fantasy, Dream, Magic, and Wonder) are equipped with this high tech infrared MOB Detection System which works superbly. Carnival which is the largest of the Cruise Entities (including all their subdivisions) can afford these systems for all their ships. Why will they not spend the money and save some lives? They have a real and legal responsibility to their passengers and their families.

  • Barbara Richards

    What I find interesting is that footage shows her falling overboard at 2 a.m. Do they not man this camera? Had they seen that they would have immediately conducted the search. What’s the point of technology to prevent all of this if you don’t pay attention to the cameras. UNLESS she committed suicide. You can’t stop that.

  • Margaret Billman

    Have you ever heard of personal responsibility? Having been on numerous cruises, I will say it is almost impossible to be walking along deck railing or viewing from a balcony to actually fall off the ship. 2:00 in the morning? Perhaps they should check her room key card to check exactly where she was previous to the “fall”.

  • CHRISTEEN Rossington

    It absolutely sickens me that money is put before life!!
    What cost is a life Cruise Lines and when will it be mandatory for all cruise lines to implement MOB.

  • Phillip Haston

    I find it difficult to understand how someone on deck 10 can go overboard without climbing on the ships railing.I hope that she is found safely.My wife and I was on Liberty last week.I just want to understand how and why this happened.As for me I trust Carnival will make sure everything humanly possible is being done to locate her alive and well.I pray for special guardian angels to go to her amen

  • Margaret:

    I find that people who talk incessantly about “personal responsibility” use it as a code word for no corporate responsibility.

    Cruise lines have a duty of care toward all of their passengers. Not complying with the Cruise Vessel Security & Safety law by refusing to implement automatic man overboard technology evidences a lack of corporate responsibility. It says that Carnival places profits over life.

    If she was totally intoxicated, Carnival probly overserved her. That is also a lack of corporate responsibility.

  • Jen

    I have to agree, this whole ‘personal responsibility’ thing is all about absolving corporations of their responsibilities. A company that makes money selling drinks to passengers, knows that those who drink too much might do stupid things. How many overboards have we seen recently that involved heavy drinking? Far too many.

  • Eric

    I agree with both. However, personal accountability is always something that each one of us need to take heart to. That is one reason there are so many lawsuits all over the place. When something bad happens, someone always looks for someone to pay, someone to blame. If she was seen climbing on the rails, then that falls under personal accountability in doing things they clearly tell you not to do, very clearly. Alcohol always adds to deaths, injuries and so on, that is also a very well known fact. This is a horrible thignt o happen to anyone, obviosuly. The technology is there and if it is installed, then it should be used and monitored as such…..that is the point of having that kind of stuff, cameras, roaming duty officers, etc. But, no one can watch everything, at all times. Accidents still happen…..they always will. I ahve been in Safety for years now and have seen first hand all kinds of systems, cameras, etc in place….along with warnings, signs and announcements……and people will still do things they shouldnt and are told not to do….intoxicated or not. Sad situation. Looks like they need to use their monitoring better and people still need to be accountable for their alcohol intake and actions….along with their friends and family that are with them…..”brothers keeper” concept. We just hope that between all those things, accidents are avoided. Sadly, sometimes they are now. I pray for her and her family…..very sad situation.

  • Johnny Blaze

    That’s a 0.0002% probability of people getting lost overboard travelling in a cruise line.

    If you really want to attack cruise lines’ irresponsibility, please go after their host of human rights abuses alongside exploitative practices, pay virtually no taxes in the US though registered in USA and an appalling environmental record.

  • Me

    This is joke. Just spoke to you 10 days ago and told you that accidents will happened again and again. Problem is that there is targets and no mater how, alcohol need to be sold and no one cares what will be happened. Second problem that 80% of crew are drunk as well. No one is safe on board and is no matter you drinking or not. Will happened again. Cheers

  • Edie Bermudes

    My husband & I were on this ship when this incident occurred. Thru the lock down in our cabins to the announcement of the video when the captain said it was appearant she fell over. I cannot get it out of my head. This was our 2nd cruise & as in anywhere you go you should not put yourself @ risk. Alcohol is all over the ship some people can have 2 drinks & they can be drunk others can have 15 & they can still function. It is a big responsibility of ones personal tolerance. To actually climb on top of the railing does not make any sense to me. This will haunt me & will stick in my head forever. A decision she made changed many lives including her own. I hope & pray for her family especially her children she can be brought home. May our Lord comfort her family.

  • Lynne

    If alcohol is all over the ship then are people required to wear flotation devices while on deck should they go overboard? Especially since Carnival does not use MOB tracking equipment this only seems the best thing to do.

    Prayers to the family that God help them through this difficult time.

  • daphna

    mr walker hello,
    can you clarify if the video showing Samantha borberg going overboard also shows what happaned moments before on the deck, does the video also shows her climbing on the railing ? do you see her sitting alone on the railing?
    it’s hard to believe ,as drunk as she was, she would go at 200 am all alone to walk on the deck
    maybe someone lured her there and pushed her throwing her overboard .

  • Debbie

    I’ve given Samantha a lot of thought and wondered why a mother of 4 young children and wife of a top thoroughbred trainer would have climbed that rail and fell overboard. Some posts have stated she was highly intoxicated at the time.

    Why would Carnival have kept serving this woman alcohol to the extent she lost control of herself? Is this company so greedy from the sale of alcohol that that takes priority over someone’s life? When money is more important than life that’s never a good thing.

    We may never know the why of this story, so I pray Samantha is with Jesus and her family comforted in this time of need.

  • KNUT HANSÉN

    DEAR ALL…

    THE COMPANIES DO NOT SPEND MONEY IF THEY CAN…THE WAGES FOR THE CREW ARE EXTREMELY LOW…OFTEN UNDER THE S.C. MINIMUM INTERNATIONAL LEVEL…

    WHEN THESE CRUISESHIPS ARRIVE SCANDINAVIAN PORTS…THE CREW MUST OFTEN USE FREE WIFI AT THE CITY THEY ARE VISITING, TO GET FAMILY PHONE CONNECTION, AS THE SHIPS OFTEN HAVENT INSTALLED SUCH SYSTEMS FOR THE CREW…AND ITS COST TO MUCH…

    THESE COMPANIES WANT TO GET OUT AS MUCH FROM ALL PASSENGERS WITHOUT SPENDING TO MUCH EXTRA…THEREFORE NO TAX TO THE COSTLY USA…

    SWEDEN OFFER FREE OF CHARGE IN ALL THE PORTS THEY ARRIVE, TO GET RID OF WASTE AND THE SEPTIC TANK…BUT MOST SHIPS DUMP IT IN THE BALTIC SEA INSTEAD AND ITS REALLY HUGE AMOUNT…

    IT WILL COME STRICKTER REGULATIONS…WE CAN PROMISE THE CRUISEINDUSTRY…

    REGARDS
    KH
    FORMER R/O

  • David

    Knut,

    I doubt very much that any port anywhere (even Sweden) gives anything away for free and I’m sure this includes septic service.

    Crew members use the wifi that is available in cities around the world. The cruise lines, as you said, do not provide free internet access to their crew as this would be prohibitively expensive. Imagine the cost of 1000 or more crew (on just one ship) video messaging their families on the other side of the world.

    In North America, all workers in the service industry work for less than the minimum wage. This is allowed because they get tips from (most of) their customers. I would seriously doubt, given the chance, that any bar server or restaurant worker or anyone else in the service industry would prefer to work for minimum wage and forego the tips.

    Of course, these companies want to get as much as they can from their customers without spending to (sic) much- that is called running a business.