Girl dies after falling from cruise ship deck at PortMiami

MIAMI (WSVN) - A family’s Caribbean trip ended in tragedy after, officials said, an 8-year-old girl fell at two stories from a deck on board a cruise ship docked at PortMiami, Saturday morning.

According to statement from Carnival Cruise Line, the young victim was on a deck on the Carnival Glory’s interior atrium, located two floors above the lobby, when she fell to a lower deck, at around 8:15 a.m.

Passenger Raymond Kassim said he witnessed the aftermath of the child’s fall. “You heard, ‘Oh, my baby, oh, my baby,’ and when you looked, she was down at the bottom.”

A photograph shows crews rushing in to render aid. “She had severe injuries,” said retired emergency medical technician Bob Dorr, who was among the first to try to save the girl.

The ship’s command immediately contacted Miami-Dade Police, which was on site.

“I started doing CPR until the doctor showed up, and then the doctor took over,” said Dorr.

Paramedics responded to the scene and rushed the child in extremely critical condition to Ryder Trauma Center, where she succumbed to her injuries.

7News cameras captured family members at the hospital, where they spent much of the day. One relative said the girl, named Zion, was only out of their sight a few seconds when the tragedy happened.

“It happened so fast,” said Kassim. “She just fell over. That’s all I see.”

Passengers described the frantic effort to save the 8-year-old. “People started screaming, and people started running everywhere,” said Tyron McKelvey.

“If she had landed on the couch, she probably would have had a chance,” said Vickie Lewis. “But she didn’t. My heart goes out to the family.”

The ship had just arrived at PortMiami at the time of the incident. The victim’s family, who resides in the Bahamas, had just completed a 7-day cruise on board the Glory.

Carnival Cruise Line’s statement reads in part, “Our most heartfelt condolences are with the family at this very difficult time.”

Miami-Dade Police continue to investigate.

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