Viking CinderellaAccording to a documentary on Swedish TV4 as discussed in the Finnish newspaper Uutiset, cruise ship violence in the Baltic has grown “exponentially.” 

36 women and girls were raped on Baltic cruise ships last year (2014), according to a report from another Finnish newspaper, HBL, covering the documentary. 

The reporters used  hidden cameras to document "violent, dangerous, drunken behavior by ship passengers" and a "lack of proper oversight by ship personnel." The documentary focused on three cruise ships, the Viking Line Cinderella (photo above), the Tallink Silja Galaxy and the Birkaline Birka.

The hidden cameras revealed fights between passengers and cruise staff ignoring young women so intoxicated they were nearly unconscious. Cruise lines were criticized for selling liquor to inebriated guests and allowing passengers to drink duty free liquor during the cruise. These problems were characterized as endemic and something something the cruise companies deny.

In 2008, there were 43 reported rapes on these cruise ships. Although the program suggested that violence is increasing, it appears that there have dozens of sexual assaults each year on cruise ship in the Baltic for the past decade.

 

Photo Credit: EnDumEn via Wikipedia Creative Commons 3.0 

Yesterday, a passenger on the Tallink’s Baltic Princess went overboard while the ship was cruising from  Stockholm to Turku.

The young man, in his 20’s, fell into the icy waters of the Finnish Archipelago Sea. 

Another passenger witnessed the incident and called for help. The cruise ship turned around and the man overboard was rescued with the involvement of a rescue boat. A Coast Guard helicopter then transported the man to Finland. The rescue operation lasted twenty minutes.

The Tallink Silja group is a major operator of cruise ships in the Baltic Sea between ports in Sweden, Finland, Latvia and Estonia.

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Baltic Princess

Photo Credit: Turun Sanomat newspaper (Finland)