In a decision that could have ramifications in future cases, recently, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit ruled that a lower court should not have dismissed the testimony of an expert in a slip-and-fall case.
According to Daily Business Review, the decision came after a district court judge in Florida ruled that a plaintiff’s expert witness relied on “slipperiness standards that apply only to crew members and waited too long to test the surface.”
However, the appeals court ruled that the same standards for crewmembers should apply to everyone on cruise ships, including passengers. The woman involved in the case slipped on a Norwegian Sky pool deck and fractured her wrist.
There was reportedly a year and a half delay between the woman’s accident and her experts’ testing of the surface, which was questioned by the lower court. Keep in mind, plaintiffs must get a court order to obtain access to cruise ships, so sometimes there are delays when it comes to inspections. Because of this, as well as the decision to change standards, the appellate court asked the lower court to determine whether the claim should go to trial.
Due to the ruling, standards set by the American Society for Testing and Materials for pool deck slip resistance will now cover everyone aboard a cruise vessel.
What to Do After a Cruise Ship Slip-and-Fall Accident
If you are ever injured in a cruise ship slip-and-fall accident, speak to our nationwide maritime injury attorneys. We can investigate your case and determine if you have a claim. As this story shows, injury accident claims that involve cruise lines can be incredibly complex, so you need to make sure you have legal representation that is well versed in maritime law.
Although they may sound minor, slip-and-fall accidents can result in devastating injuries like brain injuries, spinal cord injuries and broken bones, which may require long-term therapy and rehabilitation. Treatment can be costly, so make sure that you hold a cruise line liable for your injury.
Latti & Anderson LLP – Nationwide Maritime Attorneys