Cruise Bruise Date: December 30, 2005
Cruise Bruise: Alleged Assault With A Spiked Drink
Bruise Location: At Sea
Home Town: Auckland, NZ
Cruise Line: P & O Cruise Lines
Ship: Pacific Sky
Kasmira is an advertising executive. She tells Cruise Bruise, on 30 December 2005, my brother and I were the victims of drink spiking aboard the Pacific Sky.
We were on holiday with my parents celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary. The incident occurred in the infamous Starlight Disco on the 'Pyjama Party' theme night.
When my brother was taken to my parents room by one of our friends he was unconscious. He then began to vomit repeatedly. When I returned to my parents room feeling ill and disorientated, I told them that I felt that our drinks had been spiked. However, when my parents called Pacific Sky staff for medical help, they were told that the doctor was off-duty and that we would have to wait until the next morning. My parents explained to the nurse their fears that both my brother and I had had our drinks spiked.
After some 'investigation' the nurse called my parents back to say that he had spoken to staff and they said that my brother and I were drinking excessively and that if we suspected drink spiking that we would have to come down to the medical centre the next morning and have blood tests, and it would cost $500. My parents were on a ship in the middle of nowhere with an unconscious son, a sick and disorientated daughter and staff who did not seem to care one bit.
My brother took 3 days to recover from our ordeal. After the cruise, when we returned home, my mother said to me that she really thought that my brother was going to die that night.
When I recovered, I was infuriated to hear how P&O had dealt with this situation. Both my brother and I are very responsible drinkers. We come from a good family, are street smart, hold Business degrees and are not the type of people to drink ourselves into a stupor.
When my mother called medical staff for help, she was told by the nurse that they had never had an incident of drink spiking on Pacific Sky before and that they were very surprised to hear of such a thing.
Having read about Dianne Brimble's case, this was obviously a lie since someone actually DIED from having their drink spiked aboard their ship. Surely medical staff should have known about this and therefore treated the matter very seriously. Instead they chose to lie about it.
How many people are going to have to die from cases like this before anything is done about it?
In light of Dianne Brimble's death aboard Pacific Sky, it is not hard for me to see how a situation like this can occur after my own experience onboard. I really do believe that the level of security needs to be increased on cruise ships, that the medical help needs to be improved and that the competence of staff is in urgent need of review.
Anyone who has been through a traumatic situation aboard a cruise ship will know just how strong the feeling of helplessness is. You are helpless because you are not on land and you are literally in the middle of nowhere. If staff and security on cruise ships are not prepared to take the proper means to deal with situations, the consequences can certainly be devastating.
George Allen Smith's [ see story here ] mother described cruise ships as 'the Wild West on open seas'. I really do feel that cruise ships such as Pacific Sky are in urgent need of reviewing their security measures. Due to the exposure given to this case by Cruise Bruise, the victim received a media contact though us, was featured in a newspaper article, and got the attention of the cruise line.