UK: Hailsham holidaymaker in class action against cruise liner company
Posted: December 31st, 2011 - 10:04am
Source: Eastbourne Herald
A Hailsham holiday maker is among 134 claimants in a massive High Court action against cruise giants, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines which could potentially cost the company millions of pounds in compensation.
In a joint writ issued at London’s High Court and just made publicly available, the claimants alleged they picked up norovirus.
The test case for which no court date has yet been fixed is potentially worth easily in excess of £1 million and could run to much more.
One claim is by a woman who says her husband died as a result.
The other claimants allege they were victims during nine outbreaks of norovirus on the 880 passenger luxury cruise liner Boudicca between October 2009 and April 2010.
Cruises can cost over £10,000 on the liner.
They claim to have suffered a variety of symptoms which include nausea, vomiting, abdominal cramps, diarrhoea, wind, lethargy, fever, faecal incontinence, weight loss, and bloating.
Some passengers claim they still suffer from post infective irritable bowel syndrome.
The writ accuses the cruise line of putting profits before the health and safety of its passengers.
It says the company acted with view to commercial gain rather than safeguarding the safety and well being of the passengers.
Food and drink is said to have been unfit for consumption and unhygienic leading to passengers becoming ill.
Staff are said to have failed to thoroughly wash, cook and heat food and to have failed to ensure cold food was properly refrigerated, that the buffet was covered.
It alleges that instead food was served undercooked and also reheated.
In addition to the physical symptoms suffered by passengers the writ says they also suffered distress and anxiety for themselves, and from watching each other fall ill, and lost the enjoyment of their holidays, which were of little or no benefit to them.