Princess Cruises illnesses has resulted in passengers abandoning ship in San Diego after 104 passengers and 25 crew members had fallen ill with the Norovirus. According to maritime law, passengers cannot board and disembark from different U.S. ports unless there is a stop in another country in between. When the Crown Princess, one of the Princess Cruises ships, left San Diego on Thursday, 11 people stayed behind. They had chosen to abandon ship, reports San Diego’s 10News on April 10.
One of the passengers who chose to abandon ship said that staying on the ship wasn’t worth it. "We had two more days, two more days to be on the ship; it wasn't worth it so we just felt we'd better get off now," said passenger David Sester.
The Crown Princess left Los Angeles last Saturday to embark on a week-long Pacific cruise with stops in several coastal cities. When the ship docked in San Francisco on Monday, 37 passengers had fallen ill with the stomach flu. In less than 48 hours, that number had doubled, and by the time the ship was in San Diego on Thursday, the number was at 129.
According to a CBS News report, Princess Cruises spokesperson Karen Candy is saying that the illness is suspected to be the Norovirus which can spread easily on a ship with 3,000 passengers on board. Passengers that have been afflicted with the Norovirus, a severe gastrointestinal illness that can be easily transmitted from one person to another, were confined to their cabins.
"We have implemented enhanced sanitation procedures onboard Crown Princess to interrupt the person-to-person spread of this illness," Candy told CBS News in an email statement. "Our sanitation program has been developed in coordination with the CDC and includes such measures as thorough disinfection of high-touch surfaces like railings, door handles and elevator buttons; encouraging passengers to use correct hand washing procedures and enhancing this with the use of hand sanitizing gels placed throughout the ship; isolating ill passengers in cabins until non-contagious; encouraging passengers to use their own cabin's bathroom facilities; and providing regular verbal and written communication to passengers about steps they can take to stay well while onboard."
While the latest Princess Cruises Norovirus illness has led to a fine of $300 for abandoning the Crown Princess in San Diego and for breaking the maritime law, San Diego’s 10News reports that the “fine will be paid by Princess Cruises.”