CRUISES are a very popular way to enjoy a holiday thanks to the chance to see several different destinations in one trip. Sadly, though, things do go wrong on board – so what happens if someone dies on the ship?

Last year a whopping 26.7 million people took to the seas, surpassing estimates by the Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA).

Sadly, not all of those millions of passengers survived their journey.

An ex crew member has revealed what happens when someone dies on board the cruise ship.

Tina Molson, 52, from Cleethorpes, who worked in an on board duty free shop from 2002 to 2010, has explained that deaths aren’t that rare.

“Many of the older passengers go on cruise ships for months because it’s cheaper for them than living at home.

“Some even go to sea to die,” Tina told The Sun.

“There was often a death on board. On one ship we had a shop store room next to the freezer room where the bodies were stored. We called it the ‘coffin locker.’”

There are an estimated 200 passenger deaths a year on board cruise ships, according the The Telegraph.

Most deaths are a result of age-related illnesses – the average age of a British cruise passenger was 56 in both 2017 and 2016, according to industry figures.

Older people have both more time and money so they are more likely to travel on the longer cruises available – such as three or four months – so there is more chance of them passing away.

When someone dies the announcement “Operation Bright Star” is made, which alerts the crew to the death of a passenger.

The body is then zipped up in a body bag and put in the ship’s morgue. There is usually space for three or four bodies on board.

One cruise line told the Telegraph that bodies are offloaded as soon as possible via an exit away from the passenger gangway.

Next a death certificate will be issued and the body repatriated. Costs are the responsibility of the deceased person’s family but should be covered by travel insurance.

Alternatively the body can remain on board and return home on the ship – enabling the partner of the deceased to continue with the trip.

When it comes to deaths on board aircraft, the code to alert crew to a death is “HR,” a man who claimed to be a ram agent for a major American airline revealed in a Reddit thread. HR means ‘Human Remains.”….


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What happens when someone dies on board?
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