Pools can get hectic on a cruise ship. Think about it: up to 6,000 passengers, free flowing alcohol, and no formal supervision.
But this past weekend, one cruise line took steps to quell the chaos -- and hopefully the risk of injury. Oasis of the Seas became the first Royal Caribbean ship to use licensed lifeguards as part of the line's new water safety program.
The lifeguards will roll out to every ship in the fleet by June, and all pools will have one -- even the adults-only Solarium -- during all open hours.
The line is also taking other steps to improve safety. In addition to providing life vests for kids under 12, water safety signs have been posted on the ships, and there will be a 15-minute safety video at playing at the kids' activity center on embarkation day. These actions follow two drowning deaths and two near-drownings on the line’s ships last year.
Even though there will now be supervision from the lifeguards -- professionally trained by Florida-based company StarGuard Elite -- parents will need to monitor their kids. All children under 12 will still need a parent or guardian present at the pool at all times.
Prior to Royal Caribbean's action, Disney Cruise Line was the only mainstream line to employ lifeguards.