Irish Ferries Personal Injury Compensation Information & Claims Solicitors

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Irish Ferries Personal Injury Claims Guide

Within this guide, we take a detailed look at Irish Ferries personal injury claims, explaining how they could come about and offering advice for those who have suffered an injury on board an Irish Ferries vessel. The guidance below covers information on the Athens Convention, The Merchant Shipping Act 1995, and explains the legislation under which you could make a compensation claim for injuries suffered on board a ferry.

If you have suffered an accident on board a ferry operated by Irish Ferries, it may have happened because of the owner’s or operator’s negligence with regards to your health and safety. If someone else’s negligence caused your injuries, you could be eligible to claim compensation for the injuries you have sustained and the financial implication of those injuries.

The guide also offers information on how to go about making such a claim. If you have any questions or would like some advice tailored to your specific situation, then Legal Expert would be delighted to help you. We can be reached on 0800 073 8804.

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What Is An Accident Onboard An Irish Ferry?

An accident on board an Irish Ferries vessel could be caused in several different ways and could result in various injuries. Whether you are on the crew of an Irish Ferries vessel or are travelling with Irish Ferries as a passenger, the ferry owner/operator has a duty of care towards you.

Irish Ferries personal injury claims information

They should ensure that your health and safety is protected as much as could be considered reasonable while you are travelling with them.

You may have suffered an accident on board an Irish Ferries vessel because of poorly kept fixtures or fittings, or suffered an injury when a passenger ferry sank. You might have developed food poisoning, suffered food allergies or sustained any other injury onboard an Irish Ferries ship. If you could prove that an illness or injury occurred because of negligence by the ferry owner/operator, you could be eligible to claim compensation.

Irish Ferries personal injury claims could be made for such incidents if you could prove that the ferry owner/operator was negligent, and it was their negligence that led to you suffering injuries.

Passenger Rights When Travelling By Ferry

If you’re wondering whether you could have a right to compensation if your ferry crossing is late or is cancelled, according to ABTA, as a ferry passenger you have the following rights:

  • Operators should notify passengers as soon as they can of any delays.
  • Notification on the delay of travel must be given no more than half an hour after the scheduled departure time.
  • If a crossing is to be delayed by 90 minutes or more, or cancelled, passengers should be provided with refreshments for free.
  • If a crossing is cancelled a refund or alternative should be offered.
  • If a crossing is delayed for more than 90 minutes, ferry passengers should be offered an alternative sailing time or should be reimbursed within seven days.
  • If delays cause an overnight stay, then accommodation should be provided for free.

In terms of incidents that cause personal injury onboard a ferry, EU rules cover you, your vehicle, luggage and mobility equipment (if applicable) against an accident at sea. Conditions that must be met include:

  • The vessel must be registered in the EU.
  • The journey contract must have been concluded in an EU country.
  • The ship must have departed/arrived in an EU seaport.

You should be provided with information on your rights when you purchase your ticket

Those injured in an accident on board an Irish Ferries vessel that meets the above criteria could be entitled to compensation up to EUR300,000 from the carrier’s insurer or the carrier itself. However, if loss/damage exceeds this, the limit could be raised to a maximum of EUR490,000. Advance payments to cover immediate needs could be paid out if you suffered an injury due to shipwreck, explosion, fire, a defect in the ship, collision or capsizing. If, however, an incident was caused by security threats that were beyond the operator’s control, or if a natural disaster occurred, you would not be entitled to compensation.


UK And International Maritime Legislation

The legislation that could relate to Irish Ferries personal injury claims includes the following:

  • The Athens Convention of 1974 – This piece of international law, enshrined in domestic law too, relates to the carriage of luggage and passengers by ocean. The convention limits the amount of compensation that could be claimed for personal injury and death. A requirement for compulsory passenger insurance came into place in 2002 under the convention.
  • The Merchant Shipping Act of 1995 – This UK law relates to British and UK owned vessels. It implements the international law above.
  • The International Maritime Organisation – This organisation was created in 1948 to promote cooperation between countries in developing international maritime laws. The purpose of this was to limit pollution, prevent accidents and ensure the safety of sea travel.

Types Of Accidents Affecting Irish Sea Ferries

There are a huge variety of accidents that could lead to Irish Ferries personal injury claims. The operator has a duty of care towards both its staff and its passengers in terms of their health and safety. If they are negligent in their health and safety provision and you were to experience an accident on board an Irish Ferries vessel that led to you suffering injuries, then you could claim compensation. Some examples of accidents that could occur on an Irish Ferries ship include:

  • Slips, trip and falls on an Irish Sea crossing
  • Burns/lung damage from a fire on a ferry
  • Drowning from a passenger ferry sinking
  • Falling overboard
  • Ferry crashes
  • Injuries from broken furniture or faulty automatic doors
  • Food allergies or food poisoning

In the next sections, we look at some of these types of accidents in more detail. However, if your accident on board an Irish Ferries vessel is not listed in the sections below, you could still claim if Irish Ferries’ negligence could be proven to have caused your injury.

Ferry Crashes Into Docks And Ships

While many ferry journeys take place without incident, it is possible that a ferry could crash into moving or immobile objects while in transit or while docking. In 2003, it was reported that 28 people were injured when a P&O ferry collided with a harbour wall in Dover, which is just one example of this sort of incident. If you have been injured when a ferry crashed into another vessel or another object, then you could be eligible to claim compensation for your injuries.


Whiplash Suffered Onboard A Ferry

Whiplash is an injury that happens when the head jerks forward, back or sideways in a violent action. This strains the muscles in the neck, causing pain and tenderness in the area.

If you suffer a whiplash injury in a ferry collision, whether the ferry collides with another vessel, a port wall or some other object, you may be able to claim compensation for your injuries. While whiplash could be considered to be a relatively minor injury, it could be painful and, in some cases, could last for months or even longer. This could cause you to require time off work to recover, which could mean you suffer a loss of income. You could also require physiotherapy to help you recover. These costs could be included as part of a whiplash claim.

Trips And Slips Onboard A Ferry

If you suffer a trip, slip or fall on an Irish Ferries vessel and sustain injuries as a result, your injuries could range from minor to very severe. In some extreme cases, accident victims could even suffer a fatal injury. If you could prove that your slip, trip or fall injury on board an Irish Ferries vessel could have been avoided if reasonable care had been taken by the crew, you could be eligible to claim compensation. Examples could include:

  • Slipping on spillages that were not cleared up or signposted
  • Tripping on uneven flooring due to disrepair that should have been fixed
  • Falling from unsafe balconies

It would be prudent for us to mention here that falls that result from the movement of a vessel might not lead to a successful injury claim.

Accidents Caused Stairways, Furniture And Fittings

The owner/operator of a ferry has a duty to ensure that stairways, furniture and fittings are regularly checked to ensure they are safe for use. If they do not check this is the case, and you suffer an accident on board an Irish Ferries vessel, you could potentially be eligible to claim compensation.

Examples could include:

  • A ferry workplace accident when a crew is injured by a broken chair.
  • Passenger ferry accidents caused by poorly lit stairwells which caused them to miss a step and fall.
  • A fatal passenger ferry accident caused by a broken balcony giving way when the passenger was leaning on it.

These are just a few examples of possible accidents. If you feel that poor maintenance or repair of the furniture, fittings and stairwells within a ferry has caused your injury, you could call us today to a free assessment as to your eligibility to claim.

Irish Sea Ferry Allergic Reaction Claims

If you are served food onboard an Irish Ferries vessel and have informed staff of any food allergies you have beforehand, you would expect to be provided with foods that did not contain such allergens. If you were then served food that provoked an allergic reaction, you could hold the operator of the food service upon the ferry liable for your reaction.

In terms of pre-packaged food that could be sold on ferries, allergens should be listed on the packaging. If allergens were not listed on the packaging and you suffered an allergic reaction because it did contain allergens, you could potentially be eligible to claim compensation.

Incidents Where Someone Falls Overboard

According to the .GOV website, in 2013, a child fell from the guardrail of a ferry at Seacombe ferry terminal. According to the report, the ferry’s design allowed the child to clamber up the guardrail. When she was at the top of the rail, she fell into the River Mersey. The child was rescued by a crew member. It was thought that the persons responsible for the child were distracted and did not notice her climbing. An investigation into the matter found that measures that were in place to stop passengers climbing on the guardrail were ineffective.

As you can see from the case above, it could be hard to prove liability in such a case, as the people supervising the child were distracted from their duties of caring for the child. However, the anti-climbing measures on the ferry were deemed ineffective. In cases where liability could be disputed, a lawyer could help to argue the case on your behalf.

If you were to fall overboard from a ferry, sustaining injuries, you would have to prove that the accident occurred because of negligence by the ferry owner/operator. If you had ignored signs not to climb a guardrail and subsequently fell, then you could be held responsible for your own actions, which could mean you wouldn’t be able to claim compensation.


Ferry Crew Member Accidents And Injuries

Working on a ferry could come with certain risks, especially when it comes to loading and unloading the vessel with cargo or directing vehicles. Hazards on the ferry itself could also cause crew members to suffer an injury if health and safety procedures are not followed or have not been put in place to prevent accidents to workers. 

A ferry operator, like any employer, owes a duty of care to their workers. If they breach these duties and an accident occurs, then they could be held liable for a ferry worker accident, whether it be a ro-ro ferry accident where they have been harmed by vehicles or cargo, or a crew injury caused by poor health and safety provision on deck, for example.

We understand you may be worried about your job when making an Irish Ferries personal injury claim against your employer. However, there is legislation to protect workers that make such claims, and your employer would be required to treat you no differently because of your claim. We would be happy to talk to you about this in more detail if you wish.

Irish Sea And Irish Ferries Personal Injury Claims Calculator

We realise that you may be looking for a personal injury claims calculator to help you work out what kind of compensation could be achievable for Irish Ferries personal injury claims. While we have not provided a calculator on this page, we have presented information which we feel is relevant. The figures below are taken from the Judicial College Guidelines, a legal publication used by solicitors and the courts to value injuries. Please ]note that the amounts specified below are only approximate, and you would have to have an assessment with an independent medic as part of the claims process for your claim to be properly valued.

Type of injury Explanation Payout Bracket
Chest Injuries Traumatic injuries to the claimant’s lung/s, heart and/or chest that resulted in permanent injury, reduction in life expectancy and disability £61,710 to £94,470
Chest injuries Inhalation of toxic fumes or smoke which left residual damage. Damage would not affect lung function significantly long-term £5,000 to £11,820
Serious, short-lived food poisoning Vomiting and diarrhoea could last over 2-4 weeks, but disturbance to bowel function and enjoyment of food could continue for a few years £8,950 to £18,020
Moderate neck injuries Wrenching injuries that result in serious limitations as to the movement of the neck. Further surgery may be required, and there could be a higher risk of future neck trauma £12,900 to £23,460
Moderate pelvic/hip injuries Significant level of injury but permanent disability, if any is only minor £24,950 to £36,770
Forearm fractures Simple £6,190 to £18,020
Index finger fracture Where the fracture has mended swiftly, but grip is impaired, and pain is felt with heavy use £8,550 to £11,480
Femur fracture No injury to the articular surface £8,550 to £13,210
Moderate knee injuries Cartilage or meniscus tear, or dislocations, where there could be a mild level of future disability. £13,920 to £24,580

If you cannot see your specific injury above, we could still help you. If you call the number at the top of this page and explain your injuries, we could look into which guideline payout bracket your injury could fall into.

Could I Claim Compensation For Costs?

As well as the general damages above, which are intended to compensate you for the pain, suffering and loss of amenity inflicted by your injury, you could also include other damages in Irish Ferries personal injury claims, namely special damages. These are designed that compensate you for the financial costs of your injury. They could include:

  • Care costs – Have you required home care services because of your injuries? These costs could be claimed as part of a personal injury claim.
  • Loss of earnings – Have you been paid less due to being off work recovering from your injuries, or are you expected to require time off in the future which will lead to you losing out on wages? If so, these costs could be claimed for in Irish ferries personal injury claims.
  • Travel costs – If an accident on board a ferry has caused you to have to pay for transport for medical appointments, for example, then you may be able to include these as part of your claim.
  • Medical costs – If you’ve incurred medical expenses because of a ferry accident that has caused you to suffer injuries, then you could include these costs too. They might include prescription costs, physiotherapy costs or counselling costs for example.
  • Funeral costs – If an avoidable ferry accident has led to a crew member death, and the ferry owner/operator could be held liable, then their loved ones may be able to claim compensation. Compensation could cover the funeral costs for their loved ones.

If you have sustained costs that were a direct result of an injury onboard an Irish Ferries vessel, then why not call the Legal Expert team to clarify whether you could include these costs as part of your claim?

No Win No Fee Irish Ferries Personal Injury Claims

When making Irish Ferries personal injury claims, you may prefer to have the assistance of a personal injury lawyer. However, some people may be under the impression that they would have to fund their claim upfront. This is not the case with No Win No Fee claims. 

If you were to claim in this manner, you would sign a Conditional Fee Agreement (CFA). The CFA would confirm that you will not have to pay any fees upfront or during the claim, and if your case is unsuccessful you will not have to pay any of the fees your solicitor has incurred in pursuing your case. 

If your claim is successful, your solicitor may seek a small contribution toward their costs. This is known as a success fee and forms a percentage of the compensation awarded at the end of the claim. Success fees are legally capped and will be agreed with you before the claim begins.

Why Choose The Team At Legal Expert To Handle Your Claim?

Claiming compensation for an accident on board an Irish Ferries vessel could be less stressful when you work with a company that has experience in handling claims like yours. Here at Legal Expert, we have helped a vast number of clients pursue personal injury claims, and we have fantastic feedback on our levels of service, our professionalism and our commitment to our clients.

We offer free assessments to potential claimants on their eligibility to claim. All you would have to do is tell us a few details about what’s happened to you, and one of our professional advisors would be able to assess your case to see if you could be eligible to claim.

We could also provide you with a No Win No Fee solicitor to help take your claim forward. Whatever your current situation, we could offer support and guidance if you have had an accident on board an Irish Ferries vessel that was not your fault.

Start Your Claim

Getting in touch with the advisors at Legal Expert is easy. If you would like to talk to us right away, we could be reached on 0800 073 8804. If you’d prefer to get in touch via email, the address is Or, you could opt to use the contact form or live chat feature instead. We look forward to hearing from you.

Supporting Information

Seacombe Ferry Incident – You can read the government report on the Seacombe incident here.

Information on a ferry worker accident – You can read an HSE report about a worker injury here.

ABTA complaints – Here is ABTA’s information on ferry complaints.

Fatal Accident Claims – Here, we offer guidance on claiming for someone who has died in a fatal accident.

Slip, trip and fall at work – This guide offers information on claiming for a slip, trip or fall injury at work.

No Win No Fee – More information about No Win No Fee Claims can be found here.


Written by Jeffries

Edited by Billing

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    • Patrick Mallon

      Patrick is a Grade A solicitor having qualified in 2005. He's an an expert in accident at work and public liability claims and is currently our head of the EL/PL department. Get in touch today for free to see how we can help you.

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