First cruise ship to resume on Caribbean has COVID outbreak

First cruise ship to resume on Caribbean has COVID outbreak

The cruise industry has been hard hit by COVID-19 and Sloan said how it fared would depend on how this incident unfolded. SeaDream says it operated successfully earlier this year in Norway, completing 21 voyages during the summer season as the first luxury line to resume sailing.

A passenger has tested positive for coronavirus on one of the first Caribbean cruises since the pandemic started. According to MediaRadar, a consulting firm that tracks advertising spend, the cruise industry's ad spend is still down 79% since March, with television advertising down 99% compared to 2019.

One of the main requirements is that operators must inform volunteers in writing that they are "participating in a simulation of unproven and untested health and safety protocols for purposes of simulating a cruise ship voyage and that sailing during a pandemic is an inherently risky activity". The ship, sailing on an itinerary that included St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Barbados, began sailing back to Barbados after the situation developed.

Sloan reported the captain said the passenger who tested positive had reportedly felt ill before the test, which was a rapid test with a preliminary positive result. That includes ramping up testing facilities on and off-ship, ensuring its personnel are free of coronavirus and then performing at least one test sailing to simulate an actual cruise and prove out its ability to sail safely.

Extensive, multi-layer testing for COVID-19 has been an integral part of SeaDream's efforts to create a COVID-19 negative bubble aboard its ships.

After the first positive test, Sloan wrote that the ship began working under the assumption that it had more infected passengers onboard and would immediately return to its point of departure in Bridgetown, Barbados.

Passengers were told to return to their cabins, he reported, noting that there were 53 passengers and 66 crew on the vessel anchored off the Grenadines.

This puts it below the 250 guests threshold and outside the area under the CDC's orders about cruising. Every passengers had to test negative before boarding the ship-and again once they boarded.

SeaDream was among the first cruise lines to resume service in Europe. If we get a negative from the shoreside test, we will disembark as planned and be allowed on deck tomorrow.

"Before boarding, we were required to take a full COVID antigen test no longer than 72 hours before boarding".

The CDC recently issued a 'Framework for Conditional Sailing Order for Cruise Ships'.

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