US toddler dies after falling from 11th deck of Royal Caribbean cruise ship

A US toddler has fallen to her death from a cruise ship in Puerto Rico after her grandfather accidentally dropped her out a window.

The 18-month old was playing with her grandfather, Salvatore Anello, in a dining hall on the 11th deck of the Royal Caribbean cruise ship on Sunday.

Anello was holding her close by an open window when he lost his balance and dropped her 150 feet to the dock below, reports CNN.

"Sadly, she died on impact," port authority spokesperson Jose Carmonda told CNN.

A witness told local news site Telemundo PR they heard the toddler's mother realising what had happened. 

"I looked because there were screams. That tonality, a scream of pain of that nature, it does not compare to any other scream," they told the site.

A statement from Royal Caribbean Cruises expressed sympathy to the family.

"We are deeply saddened by yesterday's tragic incident and our hearts go out to the family," said a spokesperson on Monday.

"Out of respect for their privacy we do not plan to comment further on the incident."

The baby's father is a police officer from Indiana. 

The South Bend Police Department tweeted a message of condolence to the family on Monday morning.

"The South Bend Police Department offers its sincerest condolences to Officer Alan Wiegand and his family during this difficult time following the tragic loss of their child while in Puerto Rico," reads the message.

It also asked to community to pray for the bereaved family and to give them privacy to grieve.

Local police are investigating the accident, and initial reports suggest the death was accidental.



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