Every now and then, you hear about a Norovirus outbreak on a cruise ship. Its a common ailment (which causes upset stomach, vomiting and diarrhea), and it’s magnified by the closed environment of a cruise ship – But it’s avoidable for the most part with some basic precautions. So when three seperate ships have outbreaks in a single week, you have to wonder what’s going on..
Two cruise ships in Florida (Princess Cruise Line’s Ruby Princess and Crown Princess) and one cruise ship in New Orleans (Royal Caribbean’s Voyager of the Sea) all had outbreaks last week, causing nearly 700 passengers to become sick. Many of those passengers had to be quarantined, and subsequent sailings were delayed so that the ships could be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected.
Passengers were informed of the virus and cleanup as they waited to board. I wouldn’t want to be one of those passengers, I’d be worried about getting sick all week!
The CDC says that norovirus is highly contagious and spreads from person to person, through contaminated food or water, and by touching contaminated surfaces. Careful handwashing with soap and water is key to the prevention of the spread of norovirus. Contaminated surfaces must be cleaned and disinfected thoroughly to prevent continued spread of the disease.