Security at the Ports

We recently visited several ports in Florida and were surprised to hear that some cruise passengers don’t realize that they will go through security before boarding the ship. People, thinking that they are on vacation, don’t feel that they need to go through security. Have they not heard of TSA? Maybe not. Or maybe they are just so excited about their cruise, they just don’t think about the details, which is likely the case. Some people are so excited in fact, that they never make it onto the ship; they have a heart attack and die while waiting to board. Or some other medical issue comes up. (This is a good reason to have trip cancellation insurance.)

At Port Everglades, where I toured several ships, we saw a woman lying in the grass turned on her side. Some in our group thought that she was dead. There were some security people hovering over her, but she was motionless and they didn’t seem too concerned. I assumed that she must have been drunk and lying on her side so that she didn’t aspirate vomit. We gawked awhile until the EMS people came and started hitting her on the chest. They were not performing CPR, but were hitting her and telling her to wake up. She was wearing an outfit printed with martini glasses. Perhaps they really had some alcohol in them.
Oddly enough, she had no friend, spouse or family nearby. When we relayed this story to some people at the port, we were told that often the spring breakers start partying before boarding the ship. This woman, if a spring breaker, had gone to school later in life or she was chaperoning her college-aged kids. Fortunately, port security protects some of us from our own selves.

Cruisers need to know that they will go through the same security as if they were flying. Keep that in mind when packing. We heard of several people trying to bring guns onboard. I don’t know of any cruise that has skeet shooting anymore and I can’t think of any reason to bring a gun. Well, don’t get me started about that zombie Synergy group on the Lirica. Why anybody would pack a gun in their luggage is beyond me. I hope they pack their good gun for formal night.

If you should inadvertently pack a gun, you have a few options. If you are in law enforcement, you may be able to have your gun held by the local law enforcement agency. If you are an ordinary citizen, nobody will hold the gun for you. If you drove, you can take the gun back to your car. If you flew, you probably didn’t make it through security with a gun. The problem arises when you had somebody drop you off at the port. You had better hope that you can get a hold of your ride and have them return to retrieve your gun. Otherwise, you may denied boarding. Would trip insurance cover this? I honestly don’t know, but will do some research to find the answer.
Please leave the guns at home.

Next time – other confiscated items

Sail Away

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