In the Caribbean Thursday, a , destroying at least 100 cabins. One person suffered a heart attack and died. The day before, 12 passengers were killed when .
Concerns have also been raised recently about .
But Anita Dunham-Potter, a columnist who focuses on the cruise ship industry for Tripso.com, says taking a cruise is safe.
"The cruise industry is rapidly growing," she
"I think the focus is more on cruise lines. They're a growing part of the travel sector. It's the fastest growing in the industry. Only 500,000 people cruised in 1970 and we have over 11.5 million cruising each year. And, that's expected to double in the next 10 years."
Rep. Christopher Shays (R, Conn.), who chairs a subcommittee looking into cruise safety, agrees it's safe to get on a cruise. But he told Chen the very statistics cited by Dunham-Potter "are the reason we need to look at this industry. They have every economic and ethical reason to want to protect their passengers, and I think they did, to the extent they controlled that fire.
"But what we want to get a handle on is what truly are the statistics, because there's also an incentive to downplay any problems that might be on board a ship."
Shays pointed out the waters are murky when it comes to which crimes ship companies have to report and which ones they don't: "Felonies, they have to report. If someone is murdered, but they say they're missing, that's not a crime, so they don't have to report it.