MSC Meraviglia accidents and incidents

MSC Meraviglia cruise ship


Length (LOA)
316 m / 1037 ft

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CruiseMapper's MSC Meraviglia cruise ship accidents, incidents and law news reports relate to a 5386-passenger vessel owned by MSC Cruises. Our MSC Meraviglia accidents page contains reports made by using official data from renown online news media sources, US Coast Guard and Wikipedia.

Here are also reported latest updates on cruise law news related to ashore and shipboard crimes still investigated by the police. Among those could be arrests, filed lawsuits against the shipowner / cruise line company, charges and fines, grievances, settled / withdrawn legal actions, lost cases, virus outbreaks, etc.

  • pier collision/allision - 2020 (PortMiami)
  • deaths - overboard (2019, 2022)
  • crimes - 2023 (sexual voyeurism, rape)
  • medevacs - 2023
  • Coronavirus - 2020 (issues), 2022 (229)
  • boat rescue - 2023 (24 Cubans)

04 May 2024Other Incidents

Upon the ship's arrival in Brooklyn (NYC) on May 4, 2024, a 13-meter/43-feet dead whale was discovered entangled across/suspended from the bulbous bow. The incident was confirmed by NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration).

The carcass (of a sei whale/endangered species) was relocated to Sandy Hook (New Jersey) and subsequently towed ashore to facilitate a necropsy. On May 7th, an Atlantic Marine Conservation Society team conducted the necropsy. They determined that the marine mammal was a mature female exhibiting signs of tissue trauma near the right shoulder blade and a fracture in the right flipper.

The incident occurred in the end of the 6-day "Bermuda Cruise" (itinerary April 28-May 4, roundtrip from NYC) visiting Kings Wharf (Apr 30th to May 2nd/overnight stay).

28 December 2023Boat Rescue

(CruiseMapper-emailed report from E.G./anonymous)

Hi, I'd like to mention an accident that happened on the MSC Meraviglia on December 28, 2023.

At around 12:45 PM ship time, a "sailboat with no master" was located, and the ship promptly turned around to investigate. The sailboat was in rough condition, missing its sail, and paint being torn off. After around 30 minutes, the ship contacted the US Coast Guard.

This did not affect the ship's arrival in New York City on Saturday of that week. Thanks, Edison.

The incident occurred at the end of the 7-day "The Bahamas and Florida Cruise" (itinerary Dec 3-30, roundtrip from NYC) with call ports in Florida (Port Canaveral/Orlando, Dec 18) and Bahamas (Nassau/Dec 19, and Ocean Cay/Dec 20).

08 March 2023Coast Guard Medevacs

On March 8, 2023, at ~3 am Florida time (~8 am UTC), the ship made an emergency stop off PortMiami to offload a male passenger suffering a cardiac arrest. The man was medevacked by a USCG boat and later hospitalized.

Reportedly, he was rescued from drowning in Ocean Cay's Lagoon on March 7th (after sustaining a possible heart attack) during Meraviglia's scheduled stay at the MSC's private island. When rescued from the water, the man received medical treatment but was still struggling to breathe.

The incident occurred during the 7-day "Western Caribbean Cruise" (itinerary March 5-12, roundtrip from homeport Port Canaveral/Orlando, Florida USA) with call ports in The Bahamas (Nassau/Mar 6, Ocean Cay/Mar 7, port stay 8 am-9 pm) and Mexico (Costa Maya/Mar 9, and Cozumel/Mar 10).

March 2023Crew / Passenger Crimes

(sexual voyeurism) On March 1, 2023, a female passenger from MSC Meraviglia posted on TikTok a video about an MSC employee filming her in a woman’s restroom on the ship. 

According to the woman (Saja) the man was in an MSC uniform and was recording with a phone camera from a cubicle in the adjacent restroom. According to the passenger, the restroom was near the Youth Facilities (Teens and Kids' clubs on Deck 18). The TikTok video showed several women confronting the crew in the public bathroom. A female housekeeping employee was alerted, and after several hard knocks on the cubicle's door the man opened and said "I was wrong". The housekeeper then called the ship's security personnel.

Reportedly, this was the fourth such incident that night.

MSC Cruises officially confirmed the incident and that the man involved has been fired/his employee contract terminated and deported.

09 February 2023Crew / Passenger Crimes

(sexual assault) On the late evening of February 9, 2023, a 29-year-old female passenger was sexually assaulted by a male crew. The crime occurred while the ship was at sea, navigating in the Western Caribbean en route from Belize to Mexico.

The offender was a bartender who served beverages to the victim, her husband, and four friends. At ~2:30 am (ship time), one of the friends asked the bartender for a last drink as the venue was closing. He agreed and "motioned" to the woman to meet him on the lounge's other side, then took her to a service room in a staff-only area. The intoxicated woman followed him into the room, where he allegedly started to aggressively kiss her and "forced his penis into her mouth". The husband and one of the friends searched for the woman and found her in the storage room. The husband confronted the bartender (who apologized) and called the ship's security personnel. At the Infirmary, the ship's medical staff conducted a sexual assault forensic examination (rape kit was done) to collect and preserve possible DNA evidence.

On February 24th, the American woman (resident of Saratoga Springs, Utah USA) filed a lawsuit against MSC Cruises USA accusing the company of failing to "provide a reasonably safe environment" for its passengers and to protect them from sexual assaults.

The incident occurred during the 7-day Caribbean and Bahamas Cruise" (itinerary Feb 5-12, roundtrip from Port Canaveral/Orlando City, Florida USA) with call ports in The Bahamas (Nassau, MSC Ocean Cay), Belize City (Feb 9/port stay 10 am - 5 pm) and Mexico (Cozumel).

14 January 2023Boat Rescue

On January 14, 2023, while en route from Mexico back to Florida, the ship encountered a boat in distress, notified the USCG and started a rescue operation, saving a total of 24 Cuban refugees.

All the boat’s occupants were brought onboard and provided with food, medical attention and cabins. The migrants were disembarked in Port Canaveral (on Jan 15th) and transferred to the US Customs and Border Protection Office for processing.

The incident occurred at the end of 7-day "Caribbean and Bahamas Cruise" (itinerary Jan 8-15, roundtrip from Port Canaveral/Orlando) with call ports in The Bahamas (Nassau, MSC Ocean Cay) and Mexico (Costa Maya, Cozumel).

15 December 2022Crew / Passenger Deaths

(overboard) December 15, 2022, at ~ 5 am Florida time (~10 am UTC), a 36-year-old female passenger was reported going overboard while the ship was returning to/near Port Canaveral (Florida USA). According to MSC, the liner's automatic MOB (Man Overboard) Detection System alerted the crew that a passenger went overboard. The ship immediately turned around and started a search and rescue operation. For the operation, the USCG dispatched boats and a rescue helicopter.

MSC Meraviglia was scheduled to return to Port Canaveral in the morning (at ~ 7 am / ~12-noon UTC) but was stopped by the USCG  approx 30 km / 18 mi off of the coast of Cocoa Beach (a world-famous surfing destination) where the body was discovered. Based on CCTV footage, the woman committed suicide and died after sustaining fatal injuries.

The incident occurred at the end of a 4-day "Caribbean and Bahamas Cruise" (itinerary Dec 11-15, roundtrip from homeport Port Canaveral/Orlando City) visiting The Bahamas' Nassau (Dec 12) and Ocean Cay (Dec 13).

January 2022Cruise Illness / Virus Outbreaks

(Coronavirus) On January 9, 2022 (at ~7 am / ~12-noon UTC), the ship arrived back in homeport Port Canaveral (Florida USA) with a total of 229 COVID-positive cases onboard. The information was provided by an anonymous crew, who reported that the outbreak affected 60 passengers plus 169 crew.

The infections were discovered during routine testings onboard. Most of the infected were asymptomatic or with mild symptoms.

The incident occurred during a 7-day Western Caribbean Cruise (itinerary Jan 2-9, roundtrip from Port Canaveral) with call ports in the Bahamas (MSC Ocean Cay /Jan 3) and Mexico (Costa Maya /Jan 6, and Cozumel /Jan 7).

15 March 2020Cruise Illness / Virus Outbreaks

(Coronavirus) MSC Cruises was criticized for the debarkation of thousands of MSC Meraviglia passengers in PortMiami on March 15, 2020, without undergoing virus screening. This happened just days after a former cruiser (Canadian citizen) left the ship and later tested positive for COVID-19 (Coronavirus).

The ex-passenger left Meraviglia in Miami on March 8, then the liner continued on the next scheduled voyage with 103 passengers (plus the staff-crew). By the time, Canada's Public Health Agency informed the shipowner (MSC Cruises SpA) that the man had tested Coronavirus-positive. Still, the liner departed again from PortMiami with the same crew and thousands of new tourists.

MSC announced that upon receiving the results, 7 crew (who had been in contact with the man) were isolated in individual cabins. The company also stated that US health officials had authorized the vessel to dock and disembark all Meraviglia passengers (3877) in PortMiami on March 15, and didn't request any emergency debarkation procedures. According to MSC, Meraviglia had no passengers or crew with flu-like symptoms on that voyage and that the liner had received clearance after US health authorities reviewed all the necessary documentation regarding the health of its passengers and crew.

The voyage in question was the 7-day Caribbean And Antilles Cruise (itinerary March 8-15) roundtrip from homeport Miami Florida with call ports Ocho Rios (Jamaica), George Town (Grand Cayman), Cozumel (Mexico) and MSC Ocean Cay (Bahamas).

February 2020Cruise Illness / Virus Outbreaks

Due to Coronavirus concerns, an entire voyage in late February 2020 was practically cancelled as the ship was denied entry and docking in two of the itinerary's main call ports. The 7-day "Caribbean And Antilles Cruise" (itinerary Feb 23 - March 1) was scheduled as a PortMiami roundtrip visiting Jamaica (Ocho Rios, planned port stay Feb 25 / 9 am - 5 pm), Grand Cayman Island (George Town, planned port stay Feb 26 / 8 am - 4 pm), Mexico (Cozumel, port stay Feb 27 / 10 am - 6 pm) and Bahamas (MSC Ocean Cay, island stay Feb 29 / 9 am - 12midnight).

However, due to fears of COVID-19 (Coronavirus), the scheduled visits to Jamaica and Cayman Islands were cancelled after a male crew on the ship reported flu-like symptoms. After denying entry to both countries, the vessel was finally allowed to dock and disembark passengers in Cozumel on February 28. MSC commented that the crew only had influenza and had not visited any Coronavirus-impacted regions in the last 14 days. All passengers were fully refunded.

05 January 2020Ship Collision / Allision

On January 5, 2020, at ~4:30 am, upon entering PortMiami Florida, liner's crew was alerted with code Delta Echo (meaning possible allision or collision). According to unofficial reports, the vessel hit something. This type of marine accidents is called “allision” (striking a fixed object) as opposed to “collision” (striking another vessel).

The incident allegedly occurred at the end of 7-day Caribbean cruise (itinerary December 29 - Jan 5) roundtrip from homeport Miami and visiting Jamaica (Ocho Rios), Grand Cayman (George Town), Mexico (Costa Maya) and Bahamas (Ocean Cay Island).

05 July 2019Crew / Passenger Deaths

(overboard) On July 5, 2019, a 40-year-old female passenger was reported missing/fell overboard while the cruise liner was navigating in Skagerrak Strait (between southeastern Norway and Jutland Denmark) en-route from Norway to Germany.

The Captain made the emergency call for the overboard woman at ~12:45 pm. At that time, the vessel was ~30 km (19 ml) south of Kristiansand (Norway). For the search and rescue operation, RDAF (Royal Danish Air Force) dispatched a Rescue 510 helicopter crew. The operation was assisted by the German cargo ship Perseus (container carrier), a private motorized yacht plus several fishing vessels.

The German woman was found and retrieved alive from the sea at ~2:55 pm, then flown to Aalborg Denmark. Despite the speedy rescue, helicopter crew's emergency life-support measures were unsuccessful as she was severely cold and suffered fatal injuries after the fall from the ship. She died en-route (while flown) to the hospital.

The incident occurred at the end of 7-day Northern Europe/Norwegian Fjords cruise (itinerary June 30 - July 7) roundtrip from homeport Copenhagen Denmark to Norway (Hellesylt, Molde, Flam) and Germany (Kiel).

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