Cruise Ship Accidents

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This is a hub-page for cruise ship accidents and incidents reports. We offer you here statistics and data on the “unpleasant cruise” events at sea, such as cruise ship disasters (sunk, run aground, collision, fire, mechanical problems, illness/Norovirus outbreaks), and also on cruise crew and passenger incidents – death or injury (jumps, overboard/missing, drowning, suicide, violence/assault, sexual crime).

If you want to read the statistical information only, you can skip the following introduction and go directly to the cruise ship accidents-incidents reports tables, or search the separate tables by line from this list:

Cruise Ship Accident

The list of major cruise ship accident types we are reporting here includes:cruise ship accidents reports at

  • disaster (sunk, run aground, collision)
  • mechanical problems (fire, smoke, propulsion problems, etc), often resulting in cruise cancellations.
  • illness outbreak (Norovirus, GI/GastroIntestinal, other sickness issues). It often results in delayed embarkation and/or itinerary changes, sometimes even cruise cancellation.
  • crew, worker/passenger death (jump overboard, drowning in main pool, suicide)
  • crew or passenger injury (including rape, assault, fall from dock)
  • other (crime/robbery, pollution, weather/storm causing itinerary change/delays, etc).

Most common cruise ship accidents are caused by:

  • rogue waves (up to 100 ft / 30 m)
  • storms (10 storms per season on avrg)
  • fires (a total of 72 cruise ship fires in the period between 1990 and 2011)
  • collisions (5 cruise ships sunk by hitting rocks, reefs, icebergs in the period between 1990 and 2011).

Cruise ship crime incidents

A 2008 poll reports 10% of cruise passengers were affected by some sort of crime. In the period 2002-2007, FBI prosecuted only a quarter of all cruise crimes reported then, of which:

  • 55% sexual assaults
  • 22% physical assaults
  • 7% homicides
  • 5% missing persons.

It’s a fact, that most of cruise crime cases remain unreported.

Cruise ship disease incidents

Major cruise passenger sickness incidents, according to CDC, could be categorized as:

  • Norovirus (see the above link) – an average of 15 major cruise ship virus outbreaks per year
  • Influenza – a frequent cruise passenger illness which is transmissible between the crew and the guests on subsequent (“back to back”) cruises
  • Legionnaire’s disease (Legionellosis, aka “Legion Fever”- form of pneumonia, not airborne, not person-to-person transmissible) – only 50 incidents reported over a 30 year period.

Cruise ship accidents claims

The 4 biggest ever mistakes a passenger can possibly make are:cruise ship incidents reports at

  1. Failing to read and understand the terms and conditions of the cruise ticket contract. Given to all passengers before they embark on a cruise, the cruise ticket contract contains all the limitations against the cruise ship line/company and the specific terms for filing an injury claim.
  2. Failing to report the cruise accident/injury immediately after it occurred. In order to receive compensation, a person on board the cruise ship should act immediately to report the incident/injury, collect witnesses’ testimonies, and document about the claim.
  3. Settling for less. After being injured, a cruise passenger is likely to be shortchanged by the cruise line/company, who will want to settle the claim by offering worthless gifts (like vouchers, for example).
  4. Not seeking proper medical care. Most passengers will visit the ship’s medical center after being injured, but will fail to follow up with their doctors once they of the ship/get home. For a positive outcome regarding the claim, it is important to document the injuty/injuries as much as possible.

Know, that maritime law is often confusing even to experts. Get in touch with an experienced attorney specialized in cruise ship accident claims to help you avoid these common mistakes and receive the compensation you’re entitled to.

Cruise ship accidents and incidents reports

Cruise accidents and incidents in this article are grouped by line.

  • To view only events 2014 reports, you can search with “Ctrl + F” (keyboard combination) and type 2014 – all available results will be lightened up.
  • To search by line, please use the short navigation line-links at page top.
  • If you’re interested in a particular vessel only, please use the Ctrl+F combination and type the ship name you’re looking for.

Carnival cruise ship accidents

Carnival Cruise Lines ships Date / Accident Type
Carnival Breeze
Carnival Conquest 2015 – Apr 15 (passenger death) jet ski crash
2014 – Jan 14 (family of 5 robbed at gunpoint in Roatan)
Carnival Dream 2014 – May 07 (39 Cubans rescued)
2013 – Mar 04 (mechanical)
Carnival Ecstasy 2014 – Mar 25 (41 Cubans rescued)
2013 – Apr 17 (power loss)
Carnival Elation 2013 – Mar 9 (mechanical)
Carnival Fantasy
Carnival Fascination
Carnival Freedom
Carnival Glory
Carnival Imagination
Carnival Inspiration
Carnival Legend 2013 – Mar 13 (technical)
2010 – Feb 13 (mechanical)
2009 – Sept 20 (crash with RCCL Enchantment)
2007 – Sept 02 (power loss)
2006 – May 20 (passenger death)
2005 – Aug 03 (fire)
2002 – Aug 21 (christening bad luck)
Carnival Liberty
Carnival Magic 2014 – Mar 22 (delayed cruise due to collision between a fuel barge and a tanker)
Carnival Miracle 2014 – Apr 18  (mechanical) itinerary changes
2014 – Feb 22 (injury) female passenger overboard (recovered on board)
2014 – Jan 25 (illness/Norovirus), at least 40-50 passengers got sick
Carnival Paradise 2014 – Mar 4 (24 Cubans rescued)
Carnival Pride
Carnival Sensation
Carnival Spirit 2014 – Jul 07 (passenger overboard, missing)
2013 – May 09 (passenger overboard, missing)
Carnival Splendor 2014 – Jan 20 (crew member dead in his cabin/unexplained)
2012 – Feb 23 (armed robbery)
2010 – Nov 08 (engine room fire)
Carnival Triumph 2015 – Mar 17 (passenger overboard) found dead
2014 – Feb 01 (power loss) electrical breaker failed
Carnival Sunshine
Carnival Valor 2014 – Feb 10 (cabin fire)
2013 – Dec 21 (5 people rescued) 2 women and 3 men rescued from a sinking motor yacht off the Sint Maarten island.
Carnival Victory 2013 – Oct 13 (passenger death/drowning).

Royal Caribbean cruise ship accidents

Royal Caribbean ships Date / Accident Type
Adventure Of The Seas 2014 – Mar 23 – (mechanical) All propulsion lost
2014 – Mar 20 – (mechanical) Propulsion problems forced the ship to change itinerary
2013 – Dec 29 (death/missing) Canadian passenger Tien Phuoc Nguyen jumped overboard/missing
Allure Of The Seas
Brilliance Of The Seas
Enchantment Of The Seas
Explorer Of The Seas 2014 – Jan 25 (illness) ship returns 2 days early after gastrointestinal sickness outbreak
Freedom Of The Seas 2013 – Dec 9 (illness) ~3 hours after departure had to turn back to Port Canaveral because of a medical emergency
Dec 05 (illness) had to return to St Maarten a little after departure due to medical emergency
Dec 04 (illness) instead of St Thomas stopped at San Juan because of 3 medical emergencies
Grandeur Of The Seas 2013 – May 25 (fire accident); 2014 – Mar 28 – Apr 05 (illness) Norovirus outbreak
Independence Of The Seas 2014 – Apr 02 (death) two dockworkers died while assisting in un-berthing of the ship
Jewel Of The Seas
Legend Of The Seas 2015 – Apr 13 (illness / GI)
Liberty Of The Seas 2015 – Mar 22 (passenger overboard)
Majesty Of The Seas 2014 – Jan 18 (illness) 68 people/Norovirus
Mariner Of The Seas
Navigator Of The Seas 2014 – Mar 22 (delayed cruise due to collision between a fuel barge and a tanker)
Oasis Of The Seas 2014 – Jan 3 (power loss) generator failure
2013 – Dec 28 (illness) unknown number Norovirus passengers
Quantum Of The Seas 2014 – Jun 5 (fire accident) at the shipyard during construction works
Radiance Of The Seas
Rhapsody Of The Seas 2013 – Dec 21 (death) male passenger overboard (rescue operation found the body)
Serenade Of The Seas
Splendour Of The Seas 2015 – Mar 22 – 2 crew members arrested for smuggling cocaine
2014 – Feb 7 (death) While docked in Santos, a 47 yo Brazilian male passenger jumped overboard from 7th floor (suicide)
Vision Of The Seas
Voyager Of The Seas

Princess cruise ship accidents

Princess Cruises ships Date / Accident Type
Caribbean Princess 2014 – Jan 30 (illness) Gastrointestinal illness caused the ship return 36 hours earlier
Jan 12 (illness) NoroVirus
Jan 11 (illness) Increase in the number of Norovirus passengers
2012 – Mar 12 (propulsion motor)
Coral Princess 2015 – Apr 27 (illness/Norovirus)
2013 – May 2 (fire on board)
Crown Princess 2015 – May 28 (fire on board)
2014 – Apr 10 (illness/Norovirus)
2013 – Apr 13 (toilet outage)
2006 – Jul 18 (human error listing)
2002 – Jan-Feb (illness/Norovirus)
Dawn Princess 2014 – Nov 28 (illness/Norovirus)
Diamond Princess 2014 – Jan 15 (illness) ~60 crew/passengers contracted Norovirus
Emerald Princess 2011 – May 17 (collusion with fuel barge in St Petersburg)
2010 – July 25 (electricity supply failure)
Golden Princess
Grand Princess 2014 – Aug 4 (mechanical) Engine problem forces the ship to return to Seattle
2014 – Jan 7 (death) Crew worker jumped overboard
Island Princess
Ocean Princess
Pacific Princess
Royal Princess 2013 – Sept 22 (power loss, Mediterranean)
Ruby Princess 2014 – Jan 25 (injury) passenger ended up in water, after falling off the dock
Sapphire Princess 2014 – Aug 7 (death) passenger drowns in a swimming pool
2013 – Dec 20 (illness) passengers on land hospitalization, itinerary change
2009-2010 – Alaska (dead whales on bulbous bow)
Sea Princess 2006 – May (sickness outbreak/250p)
Star Princess 2006 – March 23 (fire on board, 1 dead passenger, 13 injured)
Sun Princess 2014 – Jan 12 (death) Investigation into the medical treatment and death of a passenger.
2014 – Jan 3 (illness) Norovirus – the line is thought to allegedly knew about the outbreak, but didn’t tell passengers until the ship sailed

P and O cruise ship accidents

P&O Cruises ships Date / Accident Type
P&O Adonia
P&O Arcadia
P&O Aurora 2009 – March (World Cruise/Australia propulsion problems)
2005 – January (cancelled World Cruise due propulsion problems)
2001 – NYC WTC attacks
2003 – Oct (~500 Norovirus passengers, Piraeus/Athens quarantine)
2000 – April 27 (chistening) champagne bottle failed to shatter; May 1 (propulsion problems)
P&O Azura
P&O Oceana 2014 – Apr 03 – (propeller problems) which caused itinerary delay
P&O Oriana 2014 – Mar 03 – (propeller problems, followed by illness/Norovirus)
2014 – Feb 18 (technical/shaft)
2014 – Feb 02 (fire) After failure of PA system, the ship is 2 hours late
P&O Ventura 2013 – mechanical

Costa cruise ship accidents

Costa Cruises ships Date / Accident Type
Costa Deliziosa
Costa Diadema
Costa Fascinosa 2015 – Mar 18 – terrorist attack, at least 19 people killed
2014 – Mar 19 – (death) male passenger overboard
Costa Favolosa
Costa Fortuna 2015 – Feb 22 – unspecified “technical problem”
Costa Luminosa
Costa Magica
Costa Mediterranea
Costa neoClassica 2014 – Mar 07 – (death) male passenger overboard (rescue operation could not find the body)
2010 – Oct 18 – (collision near Shanghai)
2009 – Jul 07 – (death) passenger disappearance
2008 – Jun 06 – (MSC Poesia collision)
Costa neoRiviera
Costa neoRomantica 2015 – Mar 04 – The ship was hit by high waves which caused black-out and loss of power.
Costa Pacifica 2014 – Feb 27 (illness) Measles – The ship called on Civitavecchia. 59 crew members were infected and sent ashore for treatment.
Costa Serena
Costa Victoria
Costa Concordia 2014 – Feb 01 (salvage worker death) Spanish diver died during salvage operation.

MSC cruise ship accidents

MSC Cruises ships Date / Accident Type
MSC Armonia
MSC Divina
MSC Fantasia
MSC Lirica
MSC Magnifica
MSC Musica
MSC Opera
MSC Orchestra
MSC Poesia
MSC Preziosa
MSC Sinfonia
MSC Splendida 2015 – Mar 18 – terrorist attack, at least 19 people killed

Holland America cruise ship accidents

Holland America Line ships Date / Accident Type
ms Amsterdam
ms Eurodam
ms Maasdam 2015 – May 01 (illness) Norovirus outbreak
2014 – Mar 02-28 (illness) Norovirus outbreak
ms Nieuw Amsterdam 2014 – Feb 14 (passenger injury – sexual assaulted and beat by crewmember)
2013 – Dec 11 (overboard) 70 yo passenger fell overboard while ship was docked at Grand Turk (was saved by crewmember)
ms Noordam
ms Oosterdam
ms Prinsendam
ms Rotterdam
ms Ryndam 2015 – Jul 1 (Norovirus)
ms Statendam
ms Veendam 2014 – Jan 3 (death) 88-years old female passenger gone overboard; Feb 8 (sickness outbreak)
ms Volendam
ms Westerdam 2015 – Jun 25 – 8 passengers dead in plane crash
2014 – Jun 28 (fire on board, no dead or injured)

NCL Norwegian cruise ship accidents

NCL Norwegian Cruise Lines ships Date / Accident Type
Norwegian Breakaway 2014 – Feb 3 (death/drowning, injury) 4-year-old kid died after being pulled from a swimming pool unresponsive. Another child airlifted to hospital.
Norwegian Dawn 2015 – May 19 (power loss, run aground)
Norwegian Epic
Norwegian Gem 2015 – May 17 (passenger death/drowning) 10-year-old girl drowned in the swimming pool
Norwegian Getaway
Norwegian Jade
Norwegian Jewel
Norwegian Pearl 2014 – Apr 07 (port cancelled) NCL cancelled port of Roatan stops after the murder on April 06
2014 – Apr 06 (death) a crewmember was killed in Roatan, Honduras.
Norwegian Sky
Norwegian Spirit
Norwegian Star 2014 – Jan 21 (Gastrointestinal sickness outbreak)
Norwegian Sun
NCL Pride of America

Celebrity cruise ship accidents

Celebrity Cruises ships Date / Accident Type
Celebrity Constellation 2014 – Feb 9 (power loss) lost power in Key West
2014 – Jan 29 (crew death, overboard, missing)
Celebrity Eclipse 2013 – Apr 12 (armed robbery)
Celebrity Equinox 2015 – Feb 13-23 (illness / Norovirus outbreak)
Celebrity Infinity 2015 – Apr 11 (illness / GI)
2013 – Dec 20 (mechanical) water supply failure ~4 hr, bottled drinking water provided
Celebrity Millennium 2013 – Aug 16 (mechanical, Alaska)
Celebrity Reflection
Celebrity Silhouette 2014 – Jul 12 (propulsion problems) select ports shortened during 2014 fall
Celebrity Solstice
Celebrity Summit 2012 – May 03 (drug bust).

Disney cruise ship accidents

Cunard Line, Disney Cruise Line, Celebrity Cruises ships Date / Accident Type
Disney Dream
Disney Fantasy 2013 – Mar 30 (near drowning)
Disney Magic
Disney Wonder

Other cruise lines accidents and incidents reports

Other cruise lines ships Date / Accident Type
AIDAluna 2014 – Feb 07 (passenger killed) German male murdered during armed robbery on Margarita Island/Venezuela
Azamara Quest
Azamara Journey 2014 – Feb 26 (Asia, damaged propeller)
Celestyal Crystal 2015 – Jun 27 (collision with an oil tanker near Gallipoli, Turkey)
Crystal Serenity 2014 – Aug 03 (itinerary changes) due to violent unrest
Crystal Symphony
Cunard Queen Elizabeth 2015 – Apr 01 (passenger’s death) a woman died while attempting to board the ship from a tender
Cunard Queen Mary 2
Cunard Queen Victoria 2014 – Aug 14 (propulsion problems) earlier drydock, canceled cruises
Oceania Insignia 2014 – Dec 11 (engine fire, 3 dead)
Oceania Marina 2015 – May 7 (illness/Norovirus)
Oceania Nautica
Oceania Regatta
Oceania Riviera
Regent Seven Seas Mariner
Regent Seven Seas Navigator
Regent Seven Seas Voyager
SeaDream I
SeaDream II
Silver Cloud
Silver Explorer
Silver Galapagos
Silver Shadow
Silver Spirit
Silver Whisper
Silver Wind
Seabourn Legend
Seabourn Odyssey
Seabourn Pride
Seabourn Quest
Seabourn Sojourn
Seabourn Spirit
ms Paul Gauguin
Fred Olsen ms Balmoral 2015 – May 23 (illness/GI outbreak)
2015 – May 10 (illness/GI outbreak)
Fred Olsen ms Black Watch 2014 – Jan 30 (death) Bob Horn, former reporter, drowned in South America after falling overboard.
Fred Olsen ms Boudicca 2015 – Jan 25 (engine fire, no injuries)
Fred Olsen ms Braemar
Thomson Celebration 2014 – Feb 01 (crime/injury) An elderly couple attacked and injured while on their Canary Islands cruise
Thomson Dream
Thomson Island Escape
Thomson Majesty
Thomson Spirit
TUI Mein Schiff 1 2014 – Aug 10 (collision with seismic survey vessel in Bergen, Norway)
Saga Pearl II
Saga Ruby 2013 – Dec 13 (technical) airconditioning power generator malfunction, canceled Caribbean cruise
Saga Sapphire 2014 – May 16 (fire) ship left stranded without power
ms Marco Polo 2014 – Feb 14 (passenger killed/bad weather)
mv Horizon 2015 – Apr 13 (passenger’s death) gone overboard
mv Ocean Countess (Majestic International) 2013 – Dec 1 (fire) seriously damaged superstructure.

Cargo Ship Accidents

The most notorious of all cargo ship accidents regions of the world’s oceans are South China Sea, East Indies, Mediterranean (especially the Eastern Med), Black Sea, North Sea and the British Isles.

Cargo ships sinking caused by hull leaks, breaking in two (including due to running aground) or due to rough weather is nearly 50% of all annual vessel losses. In 2012, a total of 172 ships sunk (you can see the Wikipedia’s shipwrecks 2013 list.

One of the worst ever cargo ship accidents was the 2002 sinking of the oil tanker “Prestige”. The result was over 70,000 t oil spill into the Atlantic off the Spain’s coast – devastating as both environmental impact and economic losses (~8 billion euros).

Some of the factors leading to higher tanker and container ship accidents rates are:

  • ship registration with bad flag state control countries
  • hotspot regions

  • older ships (over 10 years old)
  • Note:The below ship accidents infographic is in a restricted size (click to enlarge).

ship accidents statistics and data infographicMost of the marine accidents involve general cargo ships or fishing vessels. Running aground is the 2nd most common cause for ship accidents – vessels get wrecked or stranded caused by striking sea bottom, the shore or various underwater wrecks.

To read latest news and updates about recent cargo ship accidents and major marine vessel incidents and various news, you can check regularly the VesselFinder tracker’s news section.

You can share/like our cruise ship accidents reports survey via the social buttons. Never forget, that everything that happens is according to The Law of Life, and has its reasons to become a reality. So learn to embrace the inevitable – to be happy and live a meaningful life.

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