Cruise ships the vanished


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Jim Kalafus

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>AMY LYNN BRADLEY

Ms Bradley, 23, went missing from the Royal Caribbean ship Rhapsody of the Seas in March 1998. She was last seen leaving her cabin early one morning for a cigarette. Police investigating her disappearance said it was unlikely she fell overboard and drowned, as she was a trained lifeguard.

This case was incredibly horrible, even by the standards of missing relatives cases, and has been the subject of at least two in depth television profiles of which I know. Dont want to open ET up to possible legal action by making assertions about what happened, but if one searches the net one might find an expanded account....it is an eerie and depressing tale.
 
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Yes indeed, Jim, and a possibility that had not occurred to me.

Interestingly, if you go to the jobs section of most major cruise liners, it is usually emphasised that crew members may not socialise with passengers off-duty, or over and above the call of duty,(especially) if entertainers.

This perhaps doesn't seem to be enforced very well. Presumably such rules exist to protect everyone -the cruise line, the crew, and the passengers. You can't entirely protect passengers against mad fellow-passengers, but cruise lines might be better able to defend their reputations and assist in inquiries if they managed to enforce their own rules better.

I suppose it must be a difficult problem because I'm sure passengers like and target crew members for friendship. I've never been on one, so don't know myself, but I have a young cousin who is a (female) purser on a major line and she has constant trouble with unwanted (and forbidden) passenger attentions, and is very wary of her own safety. One can only imagine the same situation applies in reverse sometimes, especially with 2000+ people on board. With such a population, one could perhaps assume at least one person will be either mad or of criminal intent, at least so far as policy-making goes.

I have also been told, but cannot verify personally of course, that there is a higher than average depression / suicide rate among young crew members on cruise ships - particularly among the catering staff. When my son was a junior chef, I suggest a couple of years ago that he might enjoy a year on a cruise ship - he just asked if I was trying to get rid of him for good...
 

John Clifford

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Excuse me, Noel, but how do you define "tolerances" in these instances??

It can be one thing when the evidence shows that one could have jumped overboard. However, the grief and pain that hits the families is not something that anyone of us can likely comprehend. Especially when one has no idea what happened, and strongly argue against the possibility of suicide.

CNN recently aired this story, as well, and the focused on the story of MERRIAN LYNN CARVER.

My heart definitely goes out to Ms. Carver's family, and the family members of George Smith IV and Jennifer Hagel Smith.
 

Steve Olguin

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"10-12 out of 15 million in the past year and half have gone missing on cruises" according to a report airing as i type this. Its on Catherine Crier Live on Court TV. They are suggesting cameras at all the railings, something that would cost millions upon millions. They are discussing the congress hearing this week as well as George Smith.
 

Jim Kalafus

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It is not the number of vanishings that is of interest, but the reaction of the ships' respective staff to them which is worthy of note. In the Bradley case, the response was appalling and then to see aspects of it basically repeated in the Smith case is both depressing and disturbing. There have been a large number of articles written in the last five years about the Ignore It And It Will Go Away attitude aboard cruise ships regarding onboard crime (one famed line had a policy of dismissing male employees accused of rape and providing them with free airfare home, whic generated a lot of negative publicity when the NY Times revealed it -one of the advertisers on this site is a specialist in cruise ship rape cases) and it is something worthy of governmental discussion.

>They are suggesting cameras at all the railings, something that would cost millions upon millions.

Queen Mary 2 already has them- outside of one's cabin it is difficult to find an area where one is NOT on cam- and if the cruise lines can find money to install overpriced revenue producing Colonic Therapy chambers then certainly it will not bankrupt them to install the same video security system already in operation at Dollar General and 7-11 stores.

>how do you define "tolerances" in these instances

Refer to Unsafe at Any Speed, and any of the later books about the Pinto debacle for a good illustration of how this is defined. Or, read up on the Cargo Door Latch fiasco which lead to the 1974 Paris crash and the loss of close to 350 lives, or the infamous 'gentlemens' agreement' which brought us the 1979 Chicago disaster...
 

Jim Kalafus

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BTW- if you read the QM2 thread, Jerry Nuovo was on a voyage on which a passenger vanished overboard and, in that case, response was swift and professional. They did not find the guy, but at least a prompt effort was made.

>Fourteen cases in two years

Also, does this total represent the complete number of people who vanished overboard, or is this the total number of cases where the vanishing wasn't a clear cut case of suicide or drunken accident?
 
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I don't much like the idea of cams everywhere - and I am in the country which has more than anywhere else in the world, or so I read a couple of years ago. It's too much like Big Brother, and the sort of encroachment upon civil liberties which authority imposes, for no other reason than it can.

However, on ships, I wouldn't have thought it too much trouble or cost to install them on the rails, plus some software which sounded an alarm in Security if it detected a human figure climbing/ going over the rail. I wouldn't personally bother with the interior of the ship so much as public areas are public, with many witnesses, and private areas are cabins, and nobody is going to suffer their bedroom being invaded electronically.

And I quite agree with Jim that it is the response of the cruise lines that is the really strange aspect of these tragic cases.

Colonic therapy? I thought people went on cruises to enjoy themselves...
 

Jerry Nuovo

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Oh I do remember that incident aboard the QM2 in June of 2004.The passenger's name was announced over the ship's public address system at around 9:30 PM that this particular passenger was to report to the purser's desk and then this message was repeated over and over again for the next few hours.This passenger was last seen aboard the QM2 at around 8:30 PM.Captain Paul Wright who was the QM2's captain for this particular cruise decided to sail the QM2 back to the part of the Caribbean Sea she was sailing in at 8:30 PM off the coast of the Island of St.Thomas of course to see if this passenger could be found in the water and hopefully still alive.When the QM2 arrived to this particular position off of St.Thomas at around 2 or 2:30 AM there were these powerful spot lights that hang underneath the QM2's bridge.These lights were aimed into the water and the ship stayed in this area for I think for either 1/2 an hour or an hour trying to find this overboard passenger.When this passenger could not be found in the water it was sadly decided that this passenger must have for some reason committed suicide and the QM2 sailed away from this area of the Caribbean Sea.Since this man's body was never found I guess it is also possible that this man could of also been a victim of a shark attack since from what I understand that sharks prefer warmer waters and the waters of the Caribbean Sea are warm.
 

Brian Ahern

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"Refer to Unsafe at Any Speed, and any of the later books about the Pinto debacle for a good illustration of how this is defined. Or, read up on the Cargo Door Latch fiasco which lead to the 1974 Paris crash and the loss of close to 350 lives, or the infamous 'gentlemens' agreement' which brought us the 1979 Chicago disaster..."

Jim - I'm not familiar with these cases. Would you mind explaining quickly? Were the Paris and Chicago disasters you mention airplane crashes?
 
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