A few dozen of the passengers on the infamous “Poop Cruise” are suing Carnival Cruise Line for as much as $5,000 a year for the rest of their lives. The passengers are citing medical and mental problems as the basis for the lawsuit. The lawsuits range from $10-20,ooo to 3 passengers who are suing for the $5,000 a year for life.
The passengers were on the Carnival Triumph in February of 2013 when the cruise ship had a fire break out in one of the engine rooms causing the vessel to lose power. The Triumph had to be towed to Mobile, Alabama before the passengers could disembark from the ship.
The loss of power on the cruise ship left the passengers without working toilets (toilets on cruise ships work on a vacuum), air conditioning, and basic hotel services.
Carnival did offer all of the passengers onboard a full refund of their cruise fare and transportation costs, a voucher for a future cruise, and $500 cash.
The 33 passengers who are suing the cruise line are claiming that they will need continual medical monitoring because of what happened on the ship. They want the money paid out in a lump sum based on government life expectancies. Some of the issues the passengers said that they are dealing with are anxiety and depression, PTSD, along with some medical conditions such as diarrhea, respiratory problems, and even hemorrhoids.
Carnival Corp. issued a statement saying that while they realize that the passengers onboard the Triumph experienced some uncomfortable conditions, all passengers returned safety to port and were given compensation including a full refund. Carnival also said:
This is an opportunistic lawsuit brought by plaintiff’s counsel and plaintiffs who seek to make a money grab.
Senior U.S. District Judge Donald Graham is hearing the case without a jury, did rule that the passengers can’t collect punitive damages, they can only collect damages for medical costs. That is if the medical costs are a result from the incident on the cruise ship.
Carnival is asking Graham to dismiss all damage claims stating that the passengers haven’t proved that the health issues were a result of the living conditions on the Triumph. The cruise line also said that the passengers have not proved that they suffer from lingering problems. The 33 passengers who are in the lawsuit represent just 1% of all the passengers who were on the cruise.
Since the Triumph fire, Carnival has pledged $300 million to upgrade fire safety equipment and to add emergency generators to all 24 of their cruise ships.
Cruise Fever will continue to monitor this lawsuit and will update this page as more information becomes available.