What is a Cruise Ship?

A cruise ship is a large luxury vessel that can transport many people, usually ranging from hundreds to thousands of passengers, for the intent of pleasure or vacation. Cruise ships usually follow a set itinerary, visiting ports of call where passengers may disembark to enjoy the local area, but the “days at sea” are as much a part of the experience as the ports of call visited by the ship.

Passengers enjoy a number of activities on the ship. Standard fare usually includes things like sunbathing, swimming and dining. However, cruise ships are getting larger and more luxurious, offering even more activities to entice passengers. Many cruise ships now feature amenities such as workout facilities and spas, casinos, stage shows, dance clubs, movie theaters, specialty shops, bars and more. Trips usually last a few days, or could be as long as several weeks.

Cruising contributes more than $25 billion per year to the tourism industry worldwide. The largest segment of this revenue is generated in North America and Europe, followed by the Pacific Rim.

What danger may be posed by Cruise Ships?

In rare occasions, cruise vessels may capsize or run aground as a result of rough weather, mechanical problems or negligence. Rough weather may also result in passengers becoming ill or falling and becoming injured. Due to weather or other mishaps, ships may become stranded at sea, subjecting passengers to dangers from the elements as air conditioning, refrigeration and sanitation systems become inoperable.

Passengers also may face dangers resulting from ill-trained or negligent crew onboard ships. These injuries might happen during a shore excursion or at a spa, pool or restaurant, resulting in serious personal injury, illness or even death.

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