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'Headbangers Boat' returns to Miami after man went overboard


LAMB OF GOD‘s Headbangers Boat charter cruise made its way back to Miami, Florida last Saturday, one day after a man on the ship went overboard.

The incident transpired on the morning of Friday, November 3 as the Norwegian Pearl was sailing near the Bahamas on its way back to Port Miami, a spokesperson for cruise line Norwegian Cruise Line said.

According to Cruise Hive, a search for the missing 41-year-old passenger was quickly initiated. However, after a nine-hour search, the captain of Norwegian Pearl was forced to cancel the search and rescue mission, and the vessel resumed her course to Miami.

The U.S. Coast Guard told WFLA they were conducting a search for the man who was last seen 20 miles east of Cay Say Bahamas around 4 a.m.

The Coast Guard was assisting the Royal Bahamas Defense Force in the search.

A statement released by a spokesperson for Norwegian Cruise Line read: “On the early morning of Friday, Nov. 3, 2023, Norwegian Pearl was notified that a 41-year-old male guest went overboard while the ship was sailing near the Bahamas on its way to Miami. The authorities have been notified and the United States Coast Guard search and rescue operation is underway. The investigation is ongoing, and we will share updates as appropriate. Our thoughts and prayers are with his loved ones during this difficult time.”

LAMB OF GOD said in a separate statement: “We’re deeply saddened to have learned that a member of our community was involved in a tragic incident. Sending love and light to their family and loved ones.”

Headbangers Boat co-host Riki Rachtman, who is best known as the host of MTV‘s popular 1980s and 1990s program “Headbangers Ball”, shared a video message on social media in which he addressed the tragic incident that occurred on the ship. He said: “I’m just gonna start by talking about this because it’s something that weighs heavy on our heart and all the bands and all the people that were on the cruise. Unfortunately, somebody went over. There was a man overboard. And I know what I’ve heard and I’m not gonna share anything until it already comes out. But somebody went off the ship at about four o’clock in the morning. Everybody was devastated when we were woken up by the calls, and then they spent nine hours trying to find this person with the Coast Guard. And I get sentimental when I say this, but at about nine o’clock in the morning, they made the announcement that the search was called off. And when that happened, it was devastating and it hurt everybody when you walked around the ship.”

He added: “This metal community, and I don’t talk about this ’cause you know I love so many different genres of music, but the metal community, especially the people on this boat, is just that — it’s a community — and we lost one of our own.

“My thoughts and prayers are for the families and friends and it was just so tragic.”

According to Cruise Hive, the Headbangers Boat cruise was a special charter voyage, offering a unique blend of heavy metal music with LAMB OF GOD as the headliner. The charter cruise was organized by Sixthman, which is in partnership with Norwegian Cruise Line.

Cruise Critic says that there are no specific statistics compiled by the U.S. government about how often going overboard happens on cruise ships. In general, there are about 20 incidents reported a year. “Survival rates depend on several factors, including whether the person was injured by impact with the water or part of the ship on the way down and how quickly the person can be rescued by the cruise ship crew or Coast Guard,” the web site notes. “Wind and weather factors also play a role in a rescue mission. If the seas are rough, it not only makes it difficult for a person to swim, it’s also tough for emergency staff to find them in the water. Other factors include the temperature of the sea; hypothermia can begin to set in when the water is less than 70 degrees Fahrenheit.”

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