Cruise Ship

Emerald Princess

Incident Type

Passenger Death (overboard)

Date of Accident

11th August 2023

Location of Accident

Approximately 8 mi / 13 km off Hilo (Hawaii Island)

Total Number of Deaths


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On the morning of 11th August 2023, a male passenger was reported overboard from a cruise ship near Hilo, Hawaii Island.

Details of the Incident

The ship’s authorities reported the disappearance of a 59-year-old male, identified as Mr. Kenneth Schwalbe from California, USA, to the Hawaiian Police at 8:40 am Hawaii time (18:40 UTC) when an internal search did not yield any results. Additionally, the USCG District Fourteen in Honolulu and the Coast Guard Station in Hilo were informed, which led to the commencement of a search and rescue operation.

Upon the ship’s arrival in Hilo, local police investigative officers embarked on the vessel. They analyzed CCTV footage from an exterior camera situated on Deck 9. The footage, timestamped at 4:18 am Hawaii time (14:18 UTC) on the day of the incident, confirmed Mr. Schwalbe’s fall overboard.

Operational Context

This unfortunate event took place during the ship’s 16-day “Hawaiian Islands Cruise”. This cruise commenced on 5th August and was set to conclude on 21st August, making a round trip from Los Angeles, California. The itinerary included stops in Hawaii, notably Hilo on 11th August, Honolulu on 12th August, Nawiliwili on 13th August, and Lahaina on 14th August. The ship was also scheduled to dock in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico on 20th August.

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