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Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Carnival cruise becomes third Florida ship hit by COVID-19 in a week

A Carnival cruise ship was denied entry to Bonaire and Aruba on Thursday after a positive COVID-19 test was reported on the ship, making it the third cruise to become infected with the virus in a week.

Carnival Cruise Line confirmed to The Hill on Friday that a small number of passengers are isolating after a positive COVID-19 test was reported on the ship.

The company did not say how many individuals had tested positive or are quarantining. There are 2,497 passengers and 1,112 crew members, according to the Miami Herald.

“We are working closely with the [Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] and local health authorities in all ports and destinations that we visit,” Carnival said in a statement to The Hill. ““The rapid spread of the Omicron Variant may shape how some destination authorities view even a small number of cases, even when they are being managed with our vigorous protocols.

“Some destinations have limited medical resources and are focused on managing their own local response to the variant,” the spokesperson added.

The ship left from Miami on Saturday and was headed to the southern Caribbean. The cruise is supposed to last for eight days, returning to Miami on Dec. 26.

The ship stopped in Curacao on Tuesday, but was unable to proceed to Bonaire or Aruba the next two days as scheduled. Carnival said it is slated to travel to Amber Cove in the Dominican Republic on Friday.

News of the Carnival Cruise case comes after Royal Caribbean disclosed two outbreaks in the past week.

Fifty-five vaccinated crew members and passengers on Odyssey of the Seas had positive COVID-19 tests on Wednesday, and at least 48 passengers and crew members had the virus on the Symphony of the Seas ship on Saturday.

The cases aboard cruises come as the U.S. and nations worldwide are seeing a spike in COVID-19 cases, driven in part by the highly transmissible omicron variant. The strain, which was first detected in South Africa last month, has since spread across the globe.

The omicron variant now accounts for a majority of COVID-19 cases in the U.S., according to the CDC.

Updated: 5:30 p.m.


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