Articles Tagged with “Florida tourism”

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While more than 23 million people flee the cold north weather each year to enjoy a cruise, many of those will find that the vacation of their dreams was more of a nightmare.

Falls. Attacks. Norovirus. Medical mistakes. Sexual assaults. Shore excursions gone awry.

These are just a  few of the ways a cruise can go bad.

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Last Wednesday, 12 people were stranded atop Universal Orlando’s Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit roller coaster after a “tech glitch” caused the ride to come to a halt. The park patrons were stalled in a vertical position for nearly three hours while the situation was resolved and Orlando firefighters were called in to rescue them. Luckily, no passenger was seriously injured. One person was taken to the hospital after complaining of neck pain.

This “tech glitch” was not the first for the 17-story-tall ride. At its inception, construction delays put off the grand opening of the ride for two months, and at one point, crews had to replace the mechanism responsible for preventing the coaster from sliding backward during its initial ascent up a 90-degree lift hill. Just over a year later, the ride was shut down for a month to perform “undisclosed maintenance” after warnings from the rides’ manufacturer about potential structural flaws with holding the trains together. Just this past summer, Universal shut down the ride a third time to perform inspections after a minor malfunction.

Additionally, the ride closed again briefly on Thursday afternoon for undisclosed reasons, though Universal claims the shutdown was unrelated to Wednesday’s issue.

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The damages to individuals and businesses caused by the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico are no doubt going to be many and far-reaching. The Tampa Tribune reported on June 17 that more than 200 lawsuits had already been filed in federal courts across the Gulf Coast of Florida, for losses and damages related to the spill. Single-plaintiff and class-action lawsuits are being filed daily by people and businesses suffering the effects, some on behalf of scuba shops, hotels, restaurants and tourism-related retailers. With Florida’s economy heavily dependent on tourism and the draw of its coastal areas, the filings are sure to continue.

© Cheryl Casey |

Welcome to Pensacola - Stay out of the waterContamination issues are leaking into the commercial fishing industry, and could end up on someone’s dinner plate while vacationing in the Sunshine State. The FDA reports that it is monitoring fish and shellfish safety, testing for contamination, and specifically targeting oysters, crabs and shrimp, since they could retain contaminants longer than finfish. The FDA’s newly established Incident Management Group is overseeing and coordinating issues related to the oil spill, and has already closed some fisheries as a precautionary measure.