Norwegian Cruise Line is looking to hold one of its suppliers responsible for a shower that allegedly gave a passenger third-degree burns and a seizure.
The Miami-based cruise major has filed a lawsuit in the US federal court for the Southern District of Florida against Grohe, a German water fixture manufacturer. In the litigation, the cruise line alleged that a part that Grohe made for the 4,248-berth Norwegian Escape (built 2005) let the shower water get so hot it forced Florida resident Andreas Ramirez to get skin grafts and left him with scars.
“On the date of the Ramirez incident, the subject Grohe shower mixer in the Ramirez cabin permitted the flow of hot water that exceeded 115 degrees Fahrenheit” or 46 degrees Celsius, the maximum the part should have allowed, Norwegian’s complaint read.
“At all material times Grohe had a duty to exercise reasonable care in the design, testing, manufacturing, selling and distributing the subject Grohe shower mixer.”
Ramierez embarked on the Norwegian Escape in August 2019 for a multi-month cruise, according to both the Norwegian lawsuit and the one he filed against the cruise line in the summer of 2020.
In Ramirez's lawsuit, he said he was unfamiliar with the shower controls, but had no issues until 31 December 2019, when during a trip ashore in Barbados the cabin attendant tasked with cleaning his room and shower reset the temperature from a “comfortable, warm level” to the hottest setting available.
When he attempted to shower upon his return, he was scalded and suffered a seizure.
Ramirez and Norwegian settled in May 2021 for an undisclosed sum, with the settlement allowing Norwegian to pursue claims against Grohe.
In its lawsuit, Norwegian claimed its liability exposure came from maritime law and that it was Grohe's negligence that left Ramirez injured.
It seeks to force the company to pay Ramirez's settlement and for legal fees related to the lawsuit.
Grohe did not return a request for comment.
Norwegian is being represented by attorneys from Foreman Friedman and Samole, Berger & Hicks, both in Miami.