Update: Crew Member on Oasis of the Seas Goes Missing

Posted May 26th 2010 12:16 PMUpdated May 27th 2010 12:37 PM



Royal Caribbean

The U.S. Coast Guard has abandoned its search for a 45-year old crew member who went overboard from the world's largest cruise ship, the 5,400-passenger Oasis of the Seas.

A Royal Caribbean spokeswoman said the crew member was a 45-year-old assistant waiter from St. Vincent and the Grenadines. She declined to give his name.

The ship earlier in the week skipped a port call at St. Thomas to search for the man, who had been reported missing by co-workers. After trying to page the crew member, security officers on the ship reviewed footage from security cameras which did indeed show the person going overboard, the spokeswoman said.

The incident happened off Nassau, and the ship turned around to retrace its route in hopes of finding the missing waiter. The U.S. Coast Guard later took over the search, joined by Bahamian authorities.

Because of the missed port call, passengers on the eastern Caribbean voyage are being credited $300 to $800 off a future cruise, depending on their cabin category, the spokeswoman said.

The ship visited St. Maarten on Wednesday and is currently at sea and scheduled to return to Fort Lauderdale on Saturday.
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YES!!!! Exactly FP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There was no one in the chapel when I was up there either (in fact, I wondered if they had checked it when searching). The issue is RCCL didn't care enough to do a THOROUGH SEARCH FOR HIM - - NOR ABOUT THE REST OF US!!!! JUST THE MONEY AND LEGALITIES!!!! All these people who keep saying "a person's life is worth more than a vacation" haven't got a clue what we're talking about. I wish someone could explain it to them.

June 20 2010 at 6:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Wow, that was the COLDEST comment I have ever read!!
I hope that more passengers didn't feel as you did/do.
A human being went overboard, the captain and people with morals and a conscience were looking for him...sorry that you got charged for orange juice after 11:30, and that your cabin that you paid for overlooked a not so desired theater. Maybe you should stay home? Seems like every cruise you go on is cursed....maybe people should file a class action suit on you. Karma, as is proven again and again, is a bitch.

June 19 2010 at 7:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
2 replies to Jennifer's comment

Jenniferajr5...What you and several others fail to understand, the issue is not about a lost human life, RCCL was well aware that they had no way to rescue or recover Dillon Roache, at that point, it was all about image. I have gone to the coast guard web site, RCCL does have a legal obligation to assist in the search, RCCl chose not to dispatch a closer or smaller vessel to truly assist in a search in rescue attempt, 12 hours out, 3-4 hours left of sunlight, coast guard vessels & aircraft on site. Now, you cannot fault any of us for being angry, it has nothing to do with the lost of a valued life, that is not the issue whatsoever. First, let me share something with you, if you booked through a travel agent, they get a 10% commission, if you booked directly through RCCL, that is already 10% that they already keep, 10% of a booking is higher than the 200.00 per passenger or close to it, 2nd non-emergency maintenance was scheduled on one of the busiest bookings, instead of on one of their lighter bookings, 3rd a $200.00 credit should only be used as a token for that inconvenience, 3rd RCCL has several cruises that are way below capacity, offering a future cruise at their discretion is the most honorable thing to do. Again, this is not about the unfortunate loss of Dillon Roache, it was a business decision, if you really listened to the captains announcement, it was filled with doubt, yet he made it clear that it is their responsibility to assist in the search by backtracking. I do agree that RCCL has a legal obligation, it should be a wise and practical decision, RCCL home office failed the OASIS of the Sea. I did not see anybody in the chapel praying when I went up there. So please understand there is justification in anger. I find that the people that where able to continue the cruise, as if nothing happened, partying all night, then knocking others by saying "get over it" are the real hypocrites in this situation. I still have questions, RCCL will not disclose the facts, if it was an accident RCCL is liable, if it was a suicide, unfortunately this troubled person was a very selfish person and life goes on for everybody else. There are several methods of tracking workers at sea, RCCL chooses not to invest in these safety precautions. If you bothered to notice, the ship security used ,is at the level of a walmart greeter. By the way, we were are looking foolishly, I wasted allot of time looking overboard, I actually went back to my cabin to get my binoculars. The staff most likely knew hours before the announcement that he was missing, at a time that a search would have had more purpose. The lack of using the stabilizers to conserve fuel is another issue. The captain or the ship did not go into mourning during the cruise, the cash registers kept on ringing up sales, the zip line was still running, the rock wall was open.....in other words business is business, part of doing business is fulfilling the obligations to the paying patrons or fair compensation for not fulfilling what the guest have paid for. Again it began with the non-emergency ship maintenance, which led to restructuring the Itinerary, so the cruise started out to be a disaster. We should have been notified of the change and given the option to cancel or reschedule. Since the cruise was not cancelled and we did not get off of the ship, our insurance would not cover one cent for a blotched vacation. My compassion's have nothing to do with the feeling that again, RCCL has screwed me and several other guest. RCCL should have some type of liability insurance to cover their loses, when such incidents happen, again business is business. How this is handled, will dictate if I ever cruise with RCCL in the future. I have a firm belief that when you pay your hard earned money on a vacation, you are entitled to what you have paid for, if the vacation provider does not fulfill their obligations, for any reason whatsoever, they have breeched their contract. Of coarse, RCCL has so many fine line stipulations that all you are doing is signing a one sided contract that only protects them!

June 20 2010 at 1:03 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Jenniferajr5, this does not require a response, just a quick look in the mirror, you are a republican, yes you know it and you are proud of it.

June 20 2010 at 1:16 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply


June 18 2010 at 7:56 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Yes - Royal Caribbean really has shocked me with their handling of this!!!! The articles stated (as our crewman told us) that he went over "off the Bahamas". Well - - 24 hrs later when we're at the southern part of Dominican Republic and we turned around for 8 hrs. to come back--- we never made it back up to that area!!! Then 8 hrs. back to get back on track?? Don't any of you think that was ridiculous?? All this "a person's life is worth more than a vacation" - - don't you people think that if RCCL really wanted to do a thourough search they should've sent multiple ships to the AREA he jumped off in??? Royal Caribbean is a huge BUSINESS that only cares about legalities and profit. If anyone needs proof of this - take a look at what they did to "make up" for this lost port. A voucher for a few hundred off a future vacation?????????????????????? And to quote a RCCL representative that I talked to - - his exact words were "and we don't have to do that". I don't intend to ever get on RCCL again and neither does our large red hat group that has sailed them on occasions before. Please let me know if some of you are considering lawsuits also.

June 18 2010 at 7:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Bill, there is a 4 ft. rail, however, I couldn't help but notice that there was a scaffold set up, secured onto, I believe, the aft section of the ship. This scaffolding did not have a secure railing and was exposed to the ocean, if Dillon was smoking while on this scaffolding, I can see a potential hazard. This situation is troubling, I am beginning to wonder if RCCL is covering up an accidental fall, when I seen the scaffold, my first thought was if anyone was standing 3/4 feet above the deck, they can easy get tossed overboard, especially that night, the ship was rocking up & down/side to side. All of this stinks, I am inclined to believe RCCL is covering something up, a life was lost and we are all getting shafted for it.RCCL should release the video coverage!

June 10 2010 at 10:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

To answer Judy's question...deck 4 has a track running completely around the ship for walkers and joggers. At the rear of the ship there is a four foot railing.

June 06 2010 at 4:41 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

i went on this cruise.... the guy committed suicide...he was selfish to do this. the boat is not a rescue boat and we should not have had to waste our time searching for someone who wanted to jump. If it was an accident, that is a different story. but because of him, we missed one of the most beautiful ports. It was an expensive cruise, and they should have compensated us with a credit to use on that cruise, not on a future one. a ship of that size should not be used as a rescue boat, the us coast guard should have taken charge of the entire search!

June 04 2010 at 9:29 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
alvin kotler

My wife and myself were on the oasis when the incident happened.We applaud the captain for hid decision to look for the person.As a veteran we did not leave the wounded behind and lives were lost looking for the missing.

June 01 2010 at 5:20 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

We were on this cruise, after the first announcement that someone might have gone overboard, our support was with the captain. I proceeded on deck 16 to look out, as well as several others, thinking the more eyes, the better chances of a rescue. Looking out, you can see the curved trail that the ship was leaving behind. At this point the story was not fully given, I did not hear the full message in the cabin. After 24 hours, more of the story was announced and regrettably we were informed that we were not making our primary destination port, St. Thomas. The "search" began over 8 hours after the "possible incident", the captain claimed to do a comprehensive search, yet nobody knocked on my cabin door, nor did I see any security in crisis mode, just a very casual relaxed mode, kind of like in a "Wal-Mart Greeter Mode". When I found out it was a crew member, my first thought was maybe this crew member had a good time the evening before with a passenger, which is forbidden by RCCL, this crew member might have been hiding out to save face and the truth would surface in due time.

Unfortunately, this assistant waiter, recently returning (a few days) from a month long vacation/furlough between his "6 month 3 week on board commitment", did go overboard, as we were briefed over intercom system. Although our prayers do go out to his family, I still am left with questions, did he go over with a life jacket as an escape to get back to his family or was it a suicide? How close to shore did this happen, which can only be found with surveillance footage?

What I do know is, from 11:30 p.m. to 12:50 a.m., I went to the "walk out" observation areas, above the bridge and seen a spotlight (or what appeared to be a penlight) was used from only the starboard side of the ship, held stationary and periodically shifting about a 10 degree angle and then back to the stationary position. The show areas of the ship have more lighting than the lighting used for a possible search & rescue attempt!

On our way back from St. Marteen, the 2 days at sea, I seen a small boat heading, what originally looked as it was approaching the Oasis, yet turned to the left within a 1/4 mile mile from the ship, my thought was how can such a small vessel be so far out in international waters. My second thought was, could have a similar boat met an assistant waiter back within a short distance from the Bahamas? Survival is possible if the water is broken properly and you do not allow your head to absorb the impact, the water temperature was close to 80 degrees, finding a person from a ship 8-24 hours later, which was the approximate time frame of the "search" would be impossible or miraculous.

THE SEARCH ATTEMPT WAS A PUBLIC RELATIONS MOVE ONLY, THAT INCONVENIENCED 5400 GUEST, YET RCCL KNOWS THE BAD PUBLIC RELATIONS/PRESS FROM DOING NOTHING WOULD BE HIGHER IN VOLUME FOR THIER TARGETED MARKETING AUDIENCE! $200 dollars for the first 2 passengers per cabin and 100.00 for each additional passenger for future travel, which will expire in less than 12 months (a standard procedure, along with a release of liability) is not enough for what has happened on this ship due to more than one poor judgment call! Especially on a ship that cost over $500.00 less per passenger on several other sailings this year! THIS CRUISE COST us $4000.00 for a balcony overlooking the Aqua Theatre, that is not including the cost of airfare, hotel, overpriced drinks, the cost of orange juice after 11:30 a.m., room service charges after midnight and every other nickel & dime attempts used like no other cruise that we have been on.

Much to my surprise, the entire itinerary already had been altered due to a scheduled "non-emergency" maintenance at a time that RCCL was aware of a high capacity holiday weekend travel. I still wonder if the maintenance that was performed effected the unstable conditioned that were experienced on this ship! ALTERED ITINERARY DURING A PEAK HOLIDAY SEASON TRAVEL! Usually this cruise would have started out with 2 days at sea, a time to start out your vacation. This cruise was a disaster from the beginning and RCCL should be held liable for their overall POOR JUDGEMENT.


May 31 2010 at 3:42 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to FP's comment

Yes FP - well stated. People keep saying "a person's life is more important than a vacation". Well - if they had a clue of the facts they just might get by that and realize what a clock and the mileage suggested? They might also be surprised to learn that the "rescue attempt" was a legal issue and RCCL really doesn't care what their customers think!!!! I received a call from a Royal Caribbean representative today about an hour ago. He condescendingly told me they were required by law to turn around, and they were sorry, but were sending out vouchers for a future trip. He had an attidtude when he told me that they didn't have to do that. I asked if he had called my best friend that travelled with me too. He said No - - they were "only calling the complaints because calling 5000 people was TOO TIME CONSUMING" !!!!!!! THEY CERTAINLY HAD TIME TO TAKE OUR MONEY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

June 06 2010 at 4:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

I agree... YOUR NOT AT WORK, WHATS THE PROBLEM? this is what is wrong with the world everyone looking out for there self. ME. ME. ME. MY VACATION BUT MY VACATION. GOD BLESS and dont worry when you fall/jump over board we will just tell your mom that it was my vacation and your child was not inportant. Sorry just get over it i paid alot of money. LIFE IS PRICELESS!!!!!!

May 31 2010 at 3:21 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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