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cruisingtime 07-27-2008 11:05 PM

We just returned from 10-day Alaska sailing out of San Francisco, July 16-26. There were many drills for the crew, such as simulated fire and man overboard drills. However, on an at-sea day - July 23- there were several urgent sounding announcements which were not prefaced as drills. Wording was similar to "assessment team report to deck 4 immediately". Then, additional announcement stating "assessment team should cut through crew laundry on deck 4". One to two minutes later, "assessment team stand-down" was announced.
On July 24, the following day in Victoria Canada, an ambulance was at the dock before the time passengers could go into port.
Given the nature of the announcements and the ambulance, along with the fact that the medical center is located on deck 4, I'm wondering whether this all had to do with a medical emergency or death. A friend sailing with us was surmising that a medical team may have been paged to an emergency and then been cancelled due to death of patient. Does anybody have any idea what might have been going on or where I might find any news report or info. about it?

Thanks much.

f-mattox 07-28-2008 12:46 AM

There is a website that monitors such things but I don't think I'm allowed to name it here.

But If you do a Google search on something similar to "events at sea", I think it will get you where you want to go.

Sandy 07-28-2008 07:11 AM

Hi cruisingtime and welcome to Cruise Chat.

Since each ship is a city, there are bound to be incidents and accidents that occur that require the attention of specialized teams onboard. I've been on cruises where "Team A" was called for a "Code Red." This turned out to be a crew member who slipped in the kitchen and required attention. Last year on the Queen Mary 2, an announcement was made that anyone with Type A+ blood was asked to please go to the infirmary. We found out a passenger had an accident and they thought they'd need blood for him. A hundred people volunteered, but it turned out they didn't need to take anyone's blood. The passenger was evacuated from the ship at our next port of call in the Caribbean.

Most incidents are minor and controllable on the ship. I once heard a team being called for what turned out to be a minor kitchen fire. Every incident is taken very seriously and must be reported. Thankfully, most are minor with no injuries. The ambulance may have been there as a precaution, if someone was experiencing chest pain, or fainted, or whatever.

A web site like the one f-mattox mentioned may have the report up eventually.


ymarg 07-28-2008 09:10 AM

We've never noticed or heard anything like this on a cruise (or maybe I'm just having too much fun to notice) but it's really good to know that they have teams for any kind of emergency. I've often wondered how the response is. Had a friend with a terrible injury off ship on a tour in Ocho Rios and had to be taken to a local doctor. That was pretty scary because it required many stitches. She saw the ship doctor when she got back on board and was in bed the rest of the cruise. Her doctor at home said both physicians treated her correctly. It took a year for her to heal so it wasn't a slight injury.

LHT28 07-28-2008 05:34 PM

We were awaken in the middle of the night on the last night of the cruise for an urgent call for a specific blood type. There had been an accident and the crew member required a transfusion.
Gosh nothing like being woken up at 3 am with a voice in your cabin.
We never did find out if the person was ok or not.
We have had several medical emergencies on cruise (we are old folks) and a couple of deaths.

cruisingtime 07-29-2008 11:39 AM

Thanks to everyone who responded. I was not previously aware of "events at sea" and found it very interesting. I learn something new everyday!
Happy Cruising.

Dave 07-29-2008 11:55 AM

The website in question likes to make every little thing that happens on a ship into a catastrophe. The operator of that site has an agenda against cruise lines. I've often thought of starting a counter-site that lists all the things that can go wrong on a land-based vacation. A newlywed was murdered on Antigua a few days ago. You don't hear much about that. But if 0.1% of the passengers on a cruise ship get sick, why, you'd think the plague had returned.

Hank 08-01-2008 06:26 PM

I think the OP is confusing some issues. Drills are quite common, and they have all kinds of crew drills including fire, man overboard, etc etc. As to ambulances, its quite common to have some folks get sick or even die (there are morgues on most ships) on cruises. You have thousands of folks, and many of them are up in years. One nice thing about getting sick on a ship is that there is always at least one physician, nurses, and some pretty decent facilities. Help is only a minute away as opposed to many land vacations when you can be hours from a decent hospital (try traveling throughout Egypt). Although there are times when you can hear a page for medical, most of the time the medical teams are called-out by beeper and/or their cell phones.


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