A local news station reports on the continued efforts of the children of Christy and Larry Hammer to find out why their parents died in a fire aboard a luxury river cruise ship operated by Alabama-based International Expeditions. The article is entitled Sisters who lost parents in cruise ship tragedy say company is blocking them from getting answers.
The Hammers were asleep in their cabin on La Estrella Amazonica, on the Peruvian Amazon, when a fire broke out in their cabin. (After the deadly fire, International Expeditions re-named the cruise ship the Amazon Star.)
The Peruvian Navy investigated the fire and concluded that the owner of the river cruise ship ignored basic safety regulations. The Peruvian Navy concluded that the fire was caused by a short circuit in a power strip which International Expeditions provided to the Hammers to be used in their cabins.
But this does not provide answers to why the Hammers were trapped and died in their cabin, and why they were not timely rescued as smoke billowed from their cabin.
The news station reports that a passenger on that same cruise said that the cabin doors locked from the inside and required a key to open – and even with a key were difficult to unlock.
Meanwhile, International Expeditions is continuing to keep the sisters in the dark. The news station reports that one of the daughters, Kelly Lankford, said that "They have systematically tried to road block us trying to find out answers.”
Peru fined the river boat $19,000. International Expeditions is appealing the fine.
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Photo credit: People