I've booked a cruise with mom (80yo) and wondered if you knew what happens when someone is in a wheelchair? Mom can walk short distances, but not for long distances which is why I'm bringing one onboard. (If she needs it, it's there; and if not, OK.) Since the elevators are not running during a muster drill, what does someone who can't walk down 1-2 flights of stairs do? Especially with the amount of guests who do walk/run down/up the stairs!
Any advice or first hand knowledge is greatly appreciated since we leave next week on our cruise!
My suggestion would be go to your Muster Station well before the drill starts while the elevators are still running. The crew assigned to assist will give you additional instructions on how to continue. Special provisions are made for those who need assistance and she will not be required to go to the lifeboats.
Just make sure you find your station ahead of time.
My sis and I always (2 cruises now) get our life jackets and go early to our station...
The first time our station was in a bar so we were lucky and got to sit the entire time we were waiting.
The second time we got there way too early and there was no place to sit... I couldn't do that again this time, because of health issues so we will get to our station early but if we have to stand out on deck we will wait in a nearby chair until the last minute.
You can talk to the crew and let them know, but if you take the wheelchair with you, you'll be fine, just get there a little early.
Our son "musters" at the same place as the wheelchair folks (he has Autism and it was more quiet). Sometimes it is the same letter as everyone else (if it is in a theater or lounge) and sometimes it is in a general area for the disabled.
COMPLETES THE FLEET
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Hubby ... DIAMOND (every ship except the Carnivale)
Me ... DIAMOND (every ship starting with the Tropicale)
20 year old son ... DIAMOND (every ship starting with the Tropicale...he is the only DOUBLE Milestone under the age of 21)
24 year old son ... DIAMOND
I have some mobility problems. Not bad enough to need a wheelchair unless I am having a really bad day, but I do frequently need a cane. For muster drills, I merely go to the crew member on our deck, show them the cane and say that I can't walk that many decks of stairs. Secret clue...the elevators do work, you just have to get them to allow you to use them. I would suggest putting your mom in her wheelchair, use the elevator, and you'll be fine.
I think on every cruise we have been on I have seen people in wheelchairs and on scooter and of course the crew has allowed them to use the elevator, usually with only one member of thier group (if there are more than the 2). They just need to know who is using the elevator at that time and of course if there is a real emergency they will help.
I would definitely check in at the reception desk when you arrive to let them know what cabin you are in and that there is a person with a wheelchair.
And yes go to the muster station early. This way you know you will be able to use the elevator.
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I am in need of bilateral knee replacements at a young age. To my dismay on this last cruise on the Inspiration a few weeks back I found I could not walk the stairs for the drill for the first time on a cruise.
The steward allowed me to remain in our cabin with my life preserver and brought me the paperwork to show me what to do and where to go in case of an emergency. The rest of my party went on to the drill without me.
He also gave me a paper to sign that stated I wanted to remain in my cabin due my disability of not being able to walk the stairs. They were wonderful about it.