Confidential Settlement on Behalf of Family

Confidential Settlement on Behalf of Family of 13 year Old Boy Thrown from Whale Watching Ship.

Prior to the accident, several of the boys, including the victim, had been jumping with the movement of the bow in the waves. They had been instructed to stop by the captain, but he did not order them off the bow.

The last time anyone saw the young victim, he was stationary and holding tight to the ships rail. Moments later he had been thrown overboard. The Captain did not properly mark the location on the ship's Loran and the ship's crew was not able to rescue him.

The grieving family turned to Kreindler & Kreindler to assist in the inquiry into the accident. Our investigation revealed that the ship's captain failed to take simple and appropriate precautionary measures to avoid the accident, and then reacted in a way which may have put the boy at greater risk.

It was learned that the bow pulpit is usually cordoned off by rope during the trip to and from the whale watching area, but the ship's crew had failed to secure the area on that particular day. The captain had a direct view of the boys on the bow, but failed to order them to stay off until the ship had anchored. The captain also failed to warn the passengers about the rough seas they would encounter or the danger of standing on the bow pulpit.

It was also disclosed that the crew had not been given federally mandated "man overboard" training. In that regard, the captain violated the basic standard practice of immediately putting the engines in neutral to stop the propellers when the boy went overboard. Instead, he turned toward where the boy had fallen and put the engine in full reverse. It is possible that this caused the boy to be sucked into the engine. The boy's shirt was found wound around the propeller.

After building a compelling negligence case against the whale watching ship's owner and operator, the case settled.