WWL>Topics>>2-15 6:15am Tommy talks to Jim Walker about cruise ship safety

2-15 6:15am Tommy talks to Jim Walker about cruise ship safety

Feb 15, 2013|

Tommy talks to Jim Walker, a maritime lawyer and cruise safety advocate, about the cruise ship Triumph fiasco

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Friday morning finally seems like a long week even though his money on Tuesday Tommy Tucker with -- -- 870 -- WL James walker I guess he's a maritime lawyer. And walker O'Neal O'Neal and a crew's safety advocate good morning Jim -- in morning coming out pretty good better and of people on a triumph although they are finally now on dry land and -- so when he was watch in the broadcasts about the that fiasco on board the triumph he thought he was watching a documentary about the carnival's splendor which suffered a disabling engine room fire in November 2 points and often the coast of Mexico how rare are these engine room fires and and the disabling of cruise ships. Well probably depends on who you ask if you ask the other PR people to cruise on -- it's absolutely. How rare this -- just the very freaky you know the singular thing but. The truth of the matter is that these things happen a lot. More often in the cruise lines is that even you mentioned the splendor of the splendor was essentially the chemical. Accretion of fire saying cruise line carnival. That we believe we being the United States had -- -- -- freaking aircraft carrier the Ronald Reagan. -- with a helicopter -- to. You know to drop provisions of those four people. In between that the 2010 fire and the fire last week in their intends. Other cruise ship fire some of them relatively minor but there's nothing minor about cruise ship -- far and I seats. There have been many disabling come. Fires where. Cruise ships have to be towed back to port it if you look at the big picture. We've been to a seventh congressional hearings memberships safety since 2005. -- an expert to -- chronicled. Katie cruise ship fires since 1990 that's about four. For a year so -- the -- -- history will say well that but you know we've got twenty million people sailing this year. -- fires big deal. You know the good thing is that. There hasn't been massive -- on partnership I mean this far was suppressed. It would have been a toll it would -- ended as happily as it looked last night but systems that. Is this because -- cruise lines are are make and -- about it -- make money gets would be paid to say it's the United States is all about but in a way it is capitalism but. Is because -- turn and and -- and then and and there's a lack of regulation and they wanna get these votes back in services quickly is again turn around for the next cruise. Yeah it's all of the above I mean this is a you know people understand that horrible the -- ship which is located down here in Miami. Israeli Panamanian. Corporation. It was registered day and incorporated in animal. In the late 1960s. To want to avoid US taxes. Avoid US labor and wage laws. And avoid US safety laws in the ships. Are also. Registered overseas the trial. Is actually me -- that as the company's ship that is registered in the Bahamas Hawaii is the promised. The flag state because the Bahamas doesn't. That's a round of car -- that there not to give them a hard time. And they don't really do anything -- they believe -- cruise lines alone and that's the business model. That permits no real oversight in the course the cruise ships don't make money. And unless they're operating and unlike our. US commercial aviation fleet right we have the FAA. Which has very. Serious oversight. That commercial aviation official probably. American Airlines or delta the FAA shut the -- down -- shutting these these ships down don't even really inspecting them. With any real -- in you have you know the business model -- -- The ships to be operated basically as long as the company's wanna push on the push their employees their police worked in the 1214 hours a day seven days a week. From relatively low wages. Ships and employees are kind of fungible that's -- into the day that they break conveyed their replace. Let's roll those dollars in -- Coast Guard. Has the right to inspect these -- have periodic inspections. The crucial -- -- of course you have. Coast Guard station their worlds and make -- they can inspect. Ships when they can deport but let's be clear. The cruise industry is in 35 billion dollar a year industry that's the money they collect they -- pay US taxes they bring on. Leadership's. Many many times a year and some of the ships constant billion dollars -- 8000 people. When collapsed on the Coast Guard at a new Cutler. There's a financial crisis right now findings federal agencies. The coast or is. Underfunded they don't have the resources to really conduct detailed inspections of these ships. As often as -- -- I have a lot of respect -- the Coast Guard they have their own. That a backing sick people off the ships and you know coming in to save the day that that the cruise -- don't pay any taxes they don't reimburse. The Coast Guard they'll reimburse the federal government -- sent out an aircraft carrier they don't pay for that that cost. Almost two million dollars so. That -- resigned to getting a free ride you know and this is what she sees the this rash of fires. Talk about the aircraft carrier carrier any other ship I don't know you know maybe it's because of Katrina and that I'm always. Particularly aware when it comes only hitting suffering but for the life of me I can't understand Jim what took so long. Tom when it comes of the triumph this happened on Sunday. People talking about sewage backing up living in deplorable conditions. -- eating onion -- is eating cucumbers images ordered talked a lady was on a ship in about fifteen minutes Rihanna. Adkins. What what what what in the world took so long that this happens on Sunday and they can't get them to dry land until last night. Well it was it was a unimpressive. Response they sent -- exit one. Now look at one single tied down so here's the ship stranded off of the Yucatan 150 miles. The -- then drifted. Almost another hundred miles Kenny mentioned such a thing before they finally sent that. Tied down I always think you know these crazy executives and their families on the ships. But they finally get get them off pronto. And that's appoint -- maritime attorney I don't know anything about this industry blitz something. More could have been done if they wanted to throw every resource they could at the problem. The other that it could have been a lot more -- and policies. You know a lot of the passengers on the prior cruises. A parent that left Galveston. Talked about propulsion problems engine problems. Ships were being. It's. Being linked to try to be maintained. This is a fourteen year old ship it's got a lot of late may -- They should have been a whole lot more before -- -- sale and that they certainly. Once the ship. Was addressed them saying they patients got multiple touchdown there. And gotten people promptly short flown back here. I we're out of time let me ask you quickly have ready jaguar opinion poll. I should people be hesitant to take cruises or not. Well I think that they should take a hard look at the cruise industry it's not just fires and capsize and there's there's a crime probably and cruise ships the the chances of being sexually assault that's twice settled the ship to shore. There are a lot of things that can go wrong and that being said twenty million people's -- this year. 95% on the fantastic time. And I'm glad these these people got the ship they're happy. They -- immediately watching on TV and that they can live another day and have another vacation maybe they need to consider our national -- -- -- -- -- -- urban street in the world and have a good time would you take crews. I wouldn't take -- -- to be honest with you are approaching too much. I used to be defense attorney should defend the cruise line has sought too much then that's why switch sides so. I preferred. You know to do stuff like Bourbon Street. The -- Bartlett in the world relative to mine and so that was those were seven great years from me so I had to do and I appreciate your time have a great day thank you -- you on again.