This is a developing story and will be updated…image

Carnival Triumph currently docked in Galveston

Blame this on the Concordia. Literally. Due to a $10 million lawsuit filed in federal court in Galveston by relatives of a German tourist who died on the Concordia, a judge based in Galveston has prohibited the ship from leaving port.

The ship is scheduled to leave at 4:00pm CT

The sheer ignorance of this action by the judge (of course it HAS to be in Texas) and the frivolous lawsuit (which legally MUST be filled in Miami or Italy, not Texas) makes my blood boil. I think the Judge needs to read CruiseInd.

UPDATE: 2:09pm John Heald stated on his Facebook page that embarkation has commenced.

Cruise Critic got this from Carnival:

"We are aware of the situation and are working through the appropriate legal channels to resolve it. The litigation in question relates to a matter that involved a European-based cruise line that is a sister line to Carnival Cruise Lines. We are optimistic that the issues regarding the Carnival Triumph will be resolved and the ship will depart on its scheduled voyage later today."

 

Bloomberg states:

“court finds that the conditions for an attachment of defendants’ joint and collective property within this district, mainly the MS Carnival Triumph, appear to exist upon an admiralty and maritime claim.”

UPDATE: 2:18pm U.S. Marshals are onboard the ship. This is typical in a ship arrest.

UPDATE: 2:20pm The judge is U.S. Magistrate Judge John Froeschner

UPDATE: 3:47pm Embarking passengers have reported that it appears that everything is still set for ontime sailing.

UPDATE: 3:54pm  Pretty quiet on the pier. It looks like all pax, stores and luggage have been loaded. About an hour to sailing

UPDATE: 4:08pm I was able to track down the actual legal Complaint:  Google Docs

UPDATE: 4:23pm Just finished reading the 13 page document. In short, because the plaintiff could not find either  Carnival plc. or Utopia Cruises Inc., registered in the state of TX, the law allowed them to arrest the vessel that was present in the state. On an amusing note, the plaintiffs want the defendants to present the Voyage Data Recorder, private emails between Micky Arison (Carnival Corp.) and Pier Foschi (Costa), the Captain of Concordia (Schettino )’s laptop. I guess the plaintiffs lawyer, of Gilman & Allison, LLP, Pearland, TX, wants to do his own investigation. Good luck getting them out of Italian official’s possession.

Anyways, basically the plaintiff was able to show that Utopia Cruises Inc., is nothing more than a Panamanian shelf company for the sole purpose of registering the ship. However since Carnival plc takes and declares revenues and expenditures on her, they state that Carnival plc are the owners. Since there is no Carnival plc present in the state of Texas, they allowed the U.S. Marshals to arrest the ship, since it was property of Carnival plc.

The plaintiff is suing Carnival plc and Utopia for a standard Death on the High Seas Act claim.

UPDATE: 4:43pm Pictures of the stickers onboard the Triumph right now: (from Twitter and Mikey’s Cruise Blog):

UPDATE: 4:53pm Situation possibly resolved! Working on a confirmation…

UPDATE: 4:55pm :

 

UPDATE: 5:04pm : Oh sheesh. Passengers are taking their pictures next to the signs… (via cruisecritic)

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UPDATE: 5:08pm : Some people are asking what would happen if she were to just leave, while being under arrest? Quick answer: the Pilots would never board her to sail her out.

UPDATE: 5:12pm : Cruise Director John Heald just posted on Facebook:

Great news for thosevsailing[sic] on the Carnival Triumph today.
We have reached agreement on this matter and are expecting the US Marshals to release the ship verysoon[sic]. The safety briefing has commenced and we should be sailing shortly.
See you here tomorrow

UPDATE: 5:38pm : SHES LEAVING RIGHT NOW

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UPDATE: 5:38pm : Now that she has successfully set sail, I’d like to thank all of you that have been following along with me today. It was quite an adventure!

I’ll still be following this story incase something else develops with the pending legal action in the Texas courts.

2 Responses

  1. unixrab

    I hope the passengers counter sue the plaintiff for messing up their vacation(s)

  2. Heather

    Keep us posted, as you seem to be the only one who knows whats going on.