For a scary read, click onto that website. Way back in the mid-1980s when this website's precursor was ink-on-pulp, we depended on one vague source for information on the then 105 cruise liners working out of US ports. The US Coast Guard let us know if fire escapes were blocked and the hulls were splitting; Centers for Disease Control told us about food prep and storage and water on board. Beyond that only travel agents had true information on cruise liner dangers. And they never talked.
All that has changed. How so? A click to Cruise Bruise has tallied the damning history of disasters at sea from days of the Titanic. Even more. Cruise Bruise has to be the only totally aggregated source providing...well...
Some 30 classifications of incidents to give any cruise planner pause: Murders on board, missing passengers while at sea, thefts on board, pirate attacks, sexual assaults, bed bug infestations, child abuse on board, bombs and terrorist attacks, collisions at sea, fires on board, groundings, sinkings...oh, and sanitation reports which are far down the line considering...
And all along you thought a few virus outbreaks and food poisonings were all you had to worry about? (*)
(*) Cruise Bruise founder has been invited to appear, anonymously if necessary, on the TALK show Grumpy Gourmet 101. ==========================================================
Windjammer gives 2007 meaning to being marooned
The storyine: Do your own polling. Ask anyone returing from a cruise, usually one of those econo four days-three nights floats out of a Florida or San Juan, PR, port, what they best recall. Food first, bar second, pool lounging last. Capt. Cruiser may be the nation's expert on pleasures and perils of cruise liners, a status gained after making 71 cruises spanning the recent 21 years.
In the recent three years Capt. Cruiser has been paying close attention to the latter of such a calling, the perils. His news clips for 2003-2204 - 14 cruise line passengers either were lost over board, murdered or committed suicide.
Hundreds have been sickened by shipboard food, tainted by unidentified virus sources, various strains of hepatitis, dirty potable water storage and improper food storage. Numerous crew assaults and rapes go unreported. There is no US jurisdiction on ships under foreign flags.
As early at the mid-1980s, The USA Dining Network Newsletter campaigned to alert the public about cruise liner dangers. At the time major issues centered around float problems involving such prestigious names as Cunard's QE2. The tub in one year flunked sanitation (Centers for Disease Control) inspections seven out of 12 months. CDC then as today was mostly interested in water supplies and food storage and food handlers. At the time a small cadre of inspectors was charged with inspecting 105 liners. (The US Coast Guard handles fire and seaworthy inspections.)
Of the 147 ships, four failed recent CDC inspections. For an enlightened read, download the four liners recording a score of 85 and under.
The oldest tub afloat, the QE2, has new owners, major upgrades, and currently pulling down a passing score...but with 41 violations, herein called "items." Note one for the QE2 galley, "a juvenile cockroach..."
Other violations dealt with food surfaces or items in proximity where food was stored and prepared. The inspection: 29 April 2007.
FOR 50 YEARS WINDJAMMER
CRUISES HAVE APPEALED
TO ADVENTURE-PRONE TYPES
WITH WIND IN THEIR SAILS...BUT,
NOW...BE ADVISED WARNS THE
WALL STREET JOURNAL...
As critical food issues mount,
call with suggestions to provoke Washington.