Passenger Jumps Overboard Independence of the Seas
A 22-year-old American male passenger has gone overboard the cruise ship Independence of the Seas early this morning. According to Royal Caribbean press release the man was witnessed intentionally going overboard from the ship’s deck 12 at around 1:45 a.m. Shortly after the incident Independence of the Seas crew has released two lifeboats in an attempt to find the missing passenger. Ship’s Captain notified the Coast Guard command center in Key West which send an airplane and cutter boat in the area where the man was last seen. Independence of the Seas was about 33 miles southeast of Key Largo sailing towards Port Everglades Florida when the Coast Guard was notified about man overboard, just before 2 a.m.
"We are saddened to report that a guest on board Independence of the Seas was witnessed intentionally going overboard from deck 12 this morning," cruise line operator Royal Caribbean said. "Our Care Team is providing support to the family of the guest, a 22-year-old American man. Our thoughts and prayers are with them during this difficult time." Says Royal Caribbean statement.
According to unofficial reports by passenger sailing on Independence of the Seas, the man was "dared to jump" by three of his friends. Cruise Niche says that the rumor was going around the ship that the man "did a swan dive off the top deck because he didn't want it to end".
Eddie Creech, passenger onboard said “Just got off Royal Caribbean's Independence of the Seas. We sat completely idle until about 6 a.m. but he was never found. The Coast Guard took over at that point. The kid was on a Christmas cruise with large group of his family.”