Father killed in four-storey fall from cruise ship balcony

A young father on board Carnival Cruise Line’s biggest ship has died after falling four storeys from a balcony onto the deck below. 

Brian Rice fell from a balcony on the ninth deck of the Carnival Horizon to the fifth as the vessel returned to Miami, in the US state of Florida on Friday, a public information officer from the Miami-Dade Police Department confirmed to publication People.

Medical staff on board tended to Rice, but he later died from his injuries.

Darren J Caprara, director of operations of the Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner Department, told USA Today that Rice died from a blunt force trauma injury.

Brian pictured with his wife Diane and their twin boys. Source: GoFundMe

Authorities arrived on the scene once the boat docked in Miami. Rice's death is being ruled an accident, but an investigation is still underway. 

According to Mail Online, Mr Rice’s wife Diane rushed down to where her husband had fallen and was restrained and consoled by staff and other passengers.

The couple, from Indiana, have three-year-old twin sons Brian Jr and Bradley.

Carnival Horizon is a 3974-passenger vessel that just made its maiden voyage in 2018.

This particular trip was a six-day, round-trip cruise around the Western Caribbean. The ship made stops in Mexico, the Cayman Islands and Jamaica before returning to Miami, People reported. 

The Carnival Horizon vessel was subject to investigations following the death. Source: CBS Miami

A Carnival spokesperson said they are providing support for Rice's family and expressed condolences. 

"Our CareTeam continues to provide support to the guest’s family and we cooperated with the standard law enforcement investigation when the ship arrived to PortMiami on Saturday morning. Our thoughts and prayers are with the guest’s family," the spokesperson said in a statement. 

GoFundMe page has since been set up to support his family, describing him as an “incredible husband, father and friend”.

“Anyone who knew Brian knows how easy it was to call him a friend. He was the most generous person we knew,” the page reads.

“He'd give the shirt off his back for a stranger and drop everything to help a friend in need.  Anyone who connected with him felt as if you were immediately a part of his family.”

Earlier this year, a toddler slipped from her grandfather's arms through an open window on the 11th floor of a Royal Caribbean cruise ship and fell to her death.

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