CDC bans U.S. cruises until October, citing ongoing outbreaks

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TAMPA (WFLA) – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday extended its ban on cruising in U.S. waters through Sept. 30, citing “ongoing” coronavirus outbreaks aboard ships.

The CDC’s no-sail order was previously due to expire on July 24. The Cruise Line International Association, which represents the largest cruise lines in the world, announced last month that its members had agreed to suspend operations until Sept. 15.

CDC Director Dr. Robert Redfield said in the the new update:

“These data have also revealed a total of 99 outbreaks on 123 different cruise ships, meaning that 80% of ships within U.S. jurisdiction were affected by COVID-19 during this time frame,” Redfield wrote in the letter. “In addition, 9 ships still have ongoing or resolving COVID-19 outbreaks on board.”

According to the executive summary released Thursday, from March 1st to July 10, 2020, there were a total of 2,973 COVID or COVID like cases on cruise ships, in addition to 34th deaths. Data also revealed 99 outbreaks on 123 cruise ships. 9 ships still have ongoing COVID 19 problems.

A no sail order was initially put into effect on March 13 by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

In the meantime, Holland America Line, announced it is selling four ships in its fleet.

According to a news release, the “Amsterdam, Maasdam, Rotterdam and Veendam will be leaving the fleet and transferring to undisclosed buyers. The ships have been sold in pairs, with the S-Class Maasdam and Veendam transferring to one company in August 2020, while the R-Class Amsterdam and Rotterdam will move to another company in fall 2020.”

The Veendam sailed out of Tampa. Holland America is adding a new ship next year, but it’s not clear yet if that ship will sail from Tampa Bay.

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