On Sunday, the US authorities monitored dozens of cruise ships that recorded cases of Covid-19 while sailing in the country’s waters, as it was reported that several Caribbean ports refused to allow them to dock.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said that more than 60 cruise ships were placed under surveillance after “reported cases of Covid-19 exceeded the threshold that requires intervention.”
The newspaper “Washington Post” that many of these ships were unable to dock at their scheduled destinations due to the authorities’ refusal to give them permissions.
“I’m a little nervous. I’m not sure I want to go on this trip,” Brenda Hammer, who was preparing to board the Royal Caribbean International’s Odyssey of the Seas, told AFP.
And the company, “Royal Caribbean”, revealed earlier this week that 55 people had been infected with “Covid” on board the “Odyssey of the Seas” ship, although 95% of the passengers were vaccinated.
Hammer, 69, added that she eventually decided to go on this trip to spend her vacation only because she had already paid the money to the company.
The ship did not dock on the Caribbean islands of Curaçao and Aruba, the last two destinations of its eight-day voyage, for precautionary reasons.
On Sunday, it returned to the port of Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
“We are optimistic about everything, and even if we can’t leave the ship, all the friends are with us here and hopefully everything will be there inside,” 45-year-old Brij Patel said before boarding the ship.
The newspaper reported that another ship, the “Carnival Freedom”, was not allowed to dock on the Caribbean island of Bonaire.
“A small number of people on the ship have been isolated due to positive Covid tests,” the operator of “Carnival Freedom” confirmed in a statement to AFP.
She added, “The rapid spread of Omicron may change the view of authorities with limited medical resources on the small number of injuries, although we deal with these injuries according to our strong procedures.”
The company said that “Carnival Freedom” arrived in Miami on Sunday morning and disembarked all the guests and “will depart on its next flight as planned,” noting that if it is denied entry to a specific port, it will “look for an alternative destination.”
She emphasized that the Centers for Disease Control “is fully informed and supportive of our procedures and operational plans.”