Passengers of the infamous Carnival Triumph aka Poop Cruise finally have some relief — they’re off the boat, no longer subsisting on diets of onion sandwiches and free to do their bathroom business in actual, flushing toilets. But while Carnival is offering up $500, a full refund and a credit for a future cruise (LOL, right?) passengers seeking to sue over the ordeal will likely be out of luck in the legal arena.
See, there’s this little thing called a booking document, notes Marketplace. Carnival basically has its butt covered for just about anything that could happen, even if sloshing around in sewage isn’t mentioned specifically.
Section 11(d) reads:
Carnival shall not be liable to the passenger for damages for emotional distress, mental suffering/anguish or psychological injury of any kind under any circumstances, except when such damages were caused by the negligence of Carnival and resulted from the same passenger sustaining actual physical injury, or having been at risk of actual physical injury, or when such damages are held to be intentionally inflicted by Carnival.
This basically means even if a passenger could prove that Carnival’s negligence led to the engine room fire that stranded the ship at sea, if he or she wasn’t physically injured, a lawsuit would be a non-starter. It’d also be tricky to prove a “risk of actual physical injury” but that may be a passenger’s best angle.
Marketplace talked to a lawyer who specializes in cruise ship cases (“They call us cruise ship chasers”) and he seems doubtful about any potential lawsuits succeeding as well because of the tight restrictions in cruise ship ticket contracts.
Despite all that, we can imagine that after having to defecate in plastic bags and hoard cans of Pringles, there will still be a few lawsuits in the works in the near future.
Worst cruise ever: Can I sue? [Marketplace]