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Safe Cruise

Project Safe Cruise Press Release: See www.projectsafecruise.blogspot.com & details below. Leave a message if you have experienced incidents involving poor security & safety practices of cruise lines. Hearings are scheduled; we will provide them to Congress. We must act to insure passenger safety. The current lack of safety & security is not acceptable especially after 9/11. On 5/12/05, we were on the Carnival Destiny near Aruba when an elderly couple disappeared without a trace.

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Location: Michigan, United States

Government could save $50 billion per year by having two shifts of white collar employees work each day. Office space costs $50,000/year for each employee yet we only use space 30% of time. We can no longer afford to have banker's hours for all. With over 2 million federal employees this cost-free paradigm change could avoid lay offs/furloughs and reduce pollution. See new plan at http://whitecollargreenspace.blogspot.com/

Monday, September 11, 2006

Ohio woman feared lost overboard on Carnival cruise from Mexico to Miami

www.orlandosentinel.com 9/11/206

www.contracostatimes.com 09/11/06

A 37-year-old passenger on a cruise ship was reported missing overboard as the liner cruised from Mexico to the Port of Miami over the weekend, the Coast Guard said on Monday. The woman, who was not immediately identified was last seen aboard the Imagination around 1:30 a.m. on Sunday, Lt. Cmdr. Chris O'Neil, Coast Guard spokesman, said. The Coast Guard said the woman is from Minnesota but the FBI, the investigating agency, later said she is from Ohio. The Miami-based cruise line said relatives last saw the passenger Saturday night, but did not report her missing until Monday, when the ship docked. FBI spokeswoman Judy Orihuela said she was not aware of any delay in reporting the disappearance. Coast Guard spokesman Dana Warr said Monday that there were no planes or vessels launched to search for the woman because it had been nearly 36 hours since anyone had last seen her.

Our thoughts and prayers are with the friends and family of the missing woman.

62 people have now gone overboard and died on cruise ship vacations since the year 2000. This does not even include the number that have died from accidents, disease, fires, assaults, and other crimes on board or during shore excursions. See http://www.cruisebruise.com/ a list of some of the deaths and http://www.cruisejunkie.com/ for list of person's overboard, outbreaks of disease, and other events. I would encourage all victims and their families contact http://www.internationalcruisevictims.org/ for guidance, support, and to prevent future tragedies. And refer to http://www.projectsafecruise.blogspot.com/ for a possible solution that could be implemented quickly. This recent case highlights the need to have independent law enforcement or "Sea Marshals" on each cruise ship.
We are concerned with the high number of cases that go unsolved either due to the negligence or incompetence of the cruise lines and their employees are due to incomplete investigations by the FBI and/or Coast Guard. This is another case involving a delay in reporting. Many questions still remain in the case of Elizabeth Galeana, the 60th person overboard. See our posting for August 23, 2006: "Cover-Up Alleged in Threatening Emails Sent to Cruise Web Site by Person Claiming to be Member of Galeana Family." The threatening emails have been reported to the Tampa FBI office. Carol Michalik, the FBI spokesperson, has not yet stated whether the investigation into the disappearance or the threatening emails is still open. A person covering the case reported that the family flew back to Detroit rather than to Italy to identify the body and they asked a PR firm to handle the publicity. The Italian officials were disappointed and then had to wait for dental records to be sent over which delayed the case for several weeks. News coverage then dropped off. When the autopsy report was finally released the PR firm and the cruise line were both prepared with news releases stating there was no foul play. The FBI agreed and said they were closing the case with no interrogations planned. Yet, they could not say whether it was an accident or a suicide. It seems like the only way to find what happened would be to interview the crew, family, and possible eyewitnesses. . Cruise ships should be as safe as Disney World. What would happen if Disney World had 62 missing persons, many unsolved, in the last six years. This adds to the increasing number of unsolved missing person cases on cruise ships. The only way to prevent future tragedies and to determine if the cruise lines are liable in any way is to demand that the FBI investigations are thorough and complete. And it is the job of the press to demand it.
The Detroit News had no coverage of this tragedy except for the AP stories. We are concerned that they are not doing their job. We have contacted Executive Editor Caesar Andrews and asked him to have a reporter investigate the case. The newspapers in Detroit get substantial income from auto dealer ads. In the past the Cruise Lines have also been known to use there advertising coffers to limit news coverage. The papers in Florida had extensive local coverage and at least did some investigative type work. Go to http://www.naplesdailynews.com/ and search for stories on "Galeana." Elizabeth's uncle, Carl Galeana, is president of the Detroit Auto Dealers Association (DADA), an organization that represents more than 240 new car and truck dealers in the metro Detroit area. Mr. Galeana is Daimler Chrysler’s dealer representative to the company’s Motor Sports/NASCAR division. He is also a co-chairman of the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), held at Cobo Center in Detroit, Michigan every January.


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