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What would happen during an emergency situation on board?

Whilst emergencies on board are rare, it's important guests know what to do should one occur. All guests are required to attend the muster drill and safety briefing held prior to departure once they have embarked. In a real event, they should act as per the instructions played at embarkation in the safety video on their cabin TV (if available), or as shown on the safety poster on the back of the cabin door, instructions given at the muster drill, instructions given over the public address system or those given by the ship’s company.

Assistance in an emergency

  • To ensure that we have an accurate and up-to-date record of guests’ requirements, a new "Your on-board needs" questionnaire must be submitted via My P&O Cruises for each cruise or if the guest’s circumstances change.
  • If the guest has a disability or reduced mobility which might mean that they require additional assistance in an emergency situation, they must advise us at the time of booking or as soon as the need is known. We will then use this information to ensure that each ship has a list of guests requiring extra assistance, together with their cabin numbers, before the ship sails. Any guest who is a wheelchair or mobility scooter user must be allocated an evacuation chair in the event of an emergency and those guests using mobility aids or are blind or deaf are strongly recommended to have a minimum of one-to-one assistance.
  • In the event of an emergency and when guests are called to their muster stations, all guest cabins are checked and evacuated by the Cabin Stewards. Any guest who requires assistance getting from their cabin to the muster station will be given the required assistance by the ship’s specially trained guest assistance team. Special evacuation chairs are available on all ships which will be utilised to transport guests down the stairs if required. This assistance will be arranged by the Cabin Stewards evacuating the cabins.
  • In the event that a guest is away from their cabin, either on the open decks or in a public room, at the onset of an emergency, these areas are also checked and evacuated. In this event any guest requiring assistance would be taken directly to their muster station by the guest assistance team and a life jacket/s would be provided in the muster station.
  • This assistance will be arranged by the crew members assigned to evacuate these areas. Similarly, if a guest requiring assistance presents themselves on a stairway at the onset of an emergency, this assistance will be arranged by a stairway guide. Stairway guides are present on all stairways designated as guest evacuation routes.
  • Please note that in the event of an emergency, guests with restricted mobility will not be able to use the lifts (as with standard worldwide emergency procedures, lifts are not to be used in emergency situations due to the risk of becoming trapped in the event of a power failure). Please also note that in the event of an emergency, those guests using motorised wheelchairs or scooters will need to be transferred to either a regular wheelchair or evacuation chair.
  • It’s not possible for the assistance team to transport guests in motorised wheelchairs or scooters down the stairs, due to the additional weight and the subsequent risk of injury to the guest and members of the assistance team in attempting this.

Additional Information

  • You must ensure to ask every guest “In the unlikely event of an emergency, would anyone on the booking need assistance?”. If they would require assistance, please add the relevant level of support to Polar Online using the "package list" option. If a guest is bringing a mobility scooter or wheelchair on board, you must add evacuation chair assistance for them. However, it’s not possible to add this resource to existing bookings. If this step is missed or needs to be added post-booking, please complete the Partnership Helpdesk Webform and we'll come back to you as soon as possible. For bookings sailing within the next six months, you should call the Partnership Helpdesk for urgent support.
  • If the guest has mobility or accessibility requirements, they must complete their "Your on-board needs" questionnaire via My Cruise as soon as possible. You can send them a reminder to do this by following this process guide.
  • We have a range of how-to-guides on Shine Rewards Club. Please click here for Cunard and here for P&O Cruises.
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