Norwegian Cruise Line Abandons Elderly Couple in Columbia

In October, Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Star dropped off 79-year-old Betty Coleman and her husband Ronald at a clinic in Cartagena, Columbia, and the ship then left the couple there without notifying anyone in the U.S.

Ronald reportedly came down with norovirus, and after medical treatment on board the ship did not help, Norwegian took the couple ashore to a local clinic. Although the couple had listed their son Mark as an emergency contact, Norwegian did not contact him or anyone else in the U.S. According to Tampa’s 10 News, Mark first learned of the situation when he received a frantic phone call from his mother saying she didn’t know where she was. When Norwegian could not provide Mark with the couple’s exact location in Columbia, the State Department helped him find his parents.

Norwegian claims it offered the couple an opportunity to call family before disembarking and that the couple chose not to. As reported by Tampa’s 10 News, the Colemans would like an apology from Norwegian, but the cruise line claims the couple never expressed “any dissatisfaction with how the situation had been handled.”

We may like to believe cruise lines always act in passengers’ best interests, but that is not always the case. Generally, cruise lines are only concerned with protecting their own interests — and the same goes for their lawyers too. Were you assaulted or injured on a cruise ship? You need a qualified Boston maritime attorney on your side who is concerned with your rights. It is important to work with an attorney who specializes in maritime law, because maritime attorneys have experience litigating against cruise lines, whereas most non-maritime trial lawyers do not.

Latti & Anderson LLP – Boston maritime trial lawyers