The Grand Princess arrives in San Francisco on Monday, March 9, 2020. The cruise ship, which had maintained a holding pattern off the coast for days, is carrying multiple people who tested positive for COVID-19. (AP Photo/Noah Berger)

Cruise lines bring in ‘stringent’ measures to prevent COVID-19 transmission amid outbreaks

At least two cruise ships have seen COVID-19 outbreaks

The cruise ship industry is bringing in “stringent, new measures” after the country’s top doctor warned Canadians against going on cruise ships as COVID-19 continues to spread.

In a Monday afternoon press release, the Canadian and Northwest chapter of Cruise Lines International Association said the measures include enhanced screening protocols and denying boarding to passengers and crew who had travelled to specific countries within 14 days of boarding. The countries from which passengers will be denied include South Korea, Iran, China, Hong Kong and any area in Italy subject to lockdown measures.

All passengers will have their temperatures checked when they board and who have travelled from Japan will have “symptom history checks” for fever, cough and difficulty breathing. Anyone with a temperature over 38 F will receive a medical assessment.

The association said it’s in talks with Canadian and American governments. Canada’s top doctor Dr. Theresa Tam issued a travel advisory against cruise ships, while the U.S. Centre for Disease Control recommended Americans avoid that form of travel.

At least two cruise ships have recorded COVID-19 outbreaks in recent weeks. The Diamond Princess had 355 out of 3,500 passengers infected, 15 of them Canadians, who were repatriated and quarantine at a military base. Another group of 228 Canadians have just landed at CFB Trenton and will undergo a 14-day quarantine after being evacuated from the Grand Princess, which is docked off the California coast. Officials said 15 people on board that cruise ship have tested positive for COVID-19, although the number of Canadians infected has not been specified.

The Grand Princess is still scheduled to dock in both Vancouver and Victoria to kick off the 2020 cruise season. In an email to Black Press Media, Port of Vancouver spokesperson Danielle Jang said they were in discussions with cruise lines about itineraries and protocol changes.

READ MORE: 228 Canadians from cruise ship Grand Princess begin quarantine at CFB Trenton

READ MORE: COVID-19 stricken Grand Princess still scheduled to dock in Vancouver this April: port

The cruise ship association said most of the more than 270 cruise ships worldwide are unaffected by COVID-19 and that all its ships must have medical facilities and trained medical professionals on board.

The cruise ship industry, the association said, brings in $3.2 billion and 23,000 jobs to Canada.

“Unprecedented disruptions in this year’s cruise season will have a significant economic impact, especially on coastal communities in Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec and British Columbia,” the association said.


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

CoronavirusCruise Ships

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19: All sports fields and baseball fields in Quesnel now closed

City trails and parks remain open, but users must maintain social distancing space of two metres

Letter to the editor: ‘Do what you can when you can’

Bert de Vink shares some insight into life with dementia

B.C. firefighters only responding to most life-threatening calls during COVID-19 pandemic

The directive comes after province spoke with paramedics, fire services, according to top doctor

Visitor to Kamloops army club tests positive for COVID-19: Interior Health

The individual visited Anavets 290 Army and Navy Club between March 13 and March 17

‘An extra $220 every 90 days’: B.C. patients pay more dispensing fees due to prescription limits

Kelowna woman says it’s outrageous to charge for refills every 30 days

‘Better days will return’: Queen Elizabeth delivers message amid COVID-19 pandemic

The Queen said crisis reminds her of her first address during World War II in 1940

Emergency aid portal opens Monday, cash could be in bank accounts by end of week: Trudeau

Emergency benefit will provide $2,000 a month for those who have lost their income due to COVID-19

Education, not enforcement: B.C. bylaw officers keeping a watch on physical distancing

A kind word, it turns out, has usually been all people need to hear

COVID-19: Hospitals remain safe for childbirth, say Vancouver Island care providers

North Island Hospital has been asked to share its perinatal COVID-19 response plan

Canadian cadets to mark 103rd anniversary of Vimy Ridge April 9 virtually

Idea of Captain Billie Sheridan in Williams Lake, B.C. who wondered what to do in times of COVID-19

B.C. VIEWS: Pandemic shows need for adequate care home staffing

Seniors in B.C. care homes face challenging times

QUIZ: How much do you know about hockey?

Take this test and find out how well you know Canada’s most popular winter sport

Most Read