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Celebrity Cruise Ship Summit Crew Member Went Missing in the Waters Off Puerto Rico

January 1, 2012 Cruise Ship Injury & Death

SAN JUAN, PUERTO RICO: The Coast Guard has suspended its search for a 30-year-old female bartender who jumped off the Celebrity cruise ship Summit near Puerto Rico.

The Coast Guard stated the crew member jumped off as the Celebrity cruise ship passed just northeast of the island of Culebra early Christmas morning. Cruise lines are obligated under maritime law to conduct an adequate search of all crew member and passengers who have gone overboard.

Since the search began, rescue crews conducted 10 aerial and seven surface searches, spanning out approximately 2,000 square nautical miles, covering a total search area approximately two thirds the size of Puerto Rico. Coast Guard rescue crews conducted the search aboard MH-65 Dolphin helicopters from Air Station Borinquen, Aguadilla, an HC-130 aircraft from Clearwater Florida, a Coast Guard 45-foot response boat medium and the Coast Guard Cutter Cushing. A Puerto Rico Police Joint Forces of Rapid Action marine unit also assisted with the search efforts. The Celebrity Summit cruise ship was sailing from San Juan, Puerto Rico to Barbados when the incident happened.