Princess Cruises sued by fisherman ship ignored

Princess Cruises sued by fisherman ship ignored

A fisherman who survived 28 days adrift in the Pacific and watched two companions die is suing the owners of a cruise ship that sailed past.

Panamanian Adrian Vasquez filed a lawsuit in Florida alleging negligence by Princess Cruises, the BBC has reported.

The US cruise company has said it deeply regrets that one of its ships sailed past.

Passengers said they spotted the castaways and alerted staff, but the line said the captain was not informed.

Vasquez's lawyer Edna Ramos said the lawsuit includes testimony from two cruise ship passengers who said they saw the boat and reported it to a member of staff.

Vasquez and his colleagues set out in a three-metre-long open fishing boat from the port of Rio Hato in February, and were on their way back after their catch when the engine failed.

After 16 days adrift, he says, they saw a cruise ship sailing past, and had made attempts to flag it down with a red sweater.

Vasquez was eventually rescued 620 miles off the mainland, near the Galapagos Islands. His friends had already died of thirst.

He said he survived thanks to a sudden rainstorm that replenished his drinking water supplies.

Princess Cruises said there appeared to have been a "breakdown in communication".

It said the captain - Edward Perrin - and the officer of the watch were not notified.

Princess Cruises said it understood its responsibility under the law of the sea to help any vessel in distress, and said its ships had been involved in more than 30 rescues over the past decade.

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