The case was similar to another one reported in the port of Malaga, Spain, that led to respective judgement. According to the case, a passenger was disembarking the 'Thomson Dream' on 16 January 2015, when she allegedly slipped on water on the permanent walkway between the ship to the passenger terminus in the port of Havana and suffered injury.
The operator, TUI Cruises, argued that this did not form part of the Claimant’s carriage, as the walkway constituted part of the “port installation” for the purpose of Article 1(8) of the Athens Convention and that therefore their responsibility for the Claimant under the Convention had ended before the accident happened.
Her solicitors sought to argue that she was still in the process of disembarkation, and, therefore, that the accident occurred within the course of carriage, and liability should attach to TUI pursuant to the Athens Convention.
The injured passenger was invited to discontinue her claim, but she sought to pursue it, and also added an additional cause of action pursuant to The Package Travel Regulations. This was argued on the basis that the port was a supplier of services on behalf of TUI, and TUI therefore liable for their acts or omissions.
TUI applied for summary judgment on the basis that neither cause of action had a real prospect of succeeding, and that the claim under the Package Travel Regulations was, in any event, time-barred.
The Judge held that, as in the previous case, since the injury took place on a structure which was to be considered to be part of the port installation, it occurred outside the course of carriage and therefore had no reasonable prospect of success. He therefore allowed the Defendant’s application for Summary Judgment. TUI were awarded their costs of the claim and of the application.
The Athens Convention, adopted at a Conference in Athens in 1974, establishes a regime of liability for damage suffered by passengers carried on a seagoing vessel. It declares a carrier liable for damage or loss suffered by a passenger if the incident causing the damage occurred in the course of the carriage and was due to the fault or neglect of the carrier.