Sunday, December 21, 2014 Headlines & Global News

Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship Passengers Caught Stomach Illness Aboard

By Julie S | Jan 19, 2014 12:39 PM EST

600 Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship Passengers Got Sick Aboard
More than 600 people became ill while on board a Royal Caribbean cruise due to the norovirus. (Photo : Reuters)

A number of passengers onboard the Royal Caribbean International's Majesty of the Seas has reportedly caught stomach illnesses during its four-night long cruise.

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The Sovereign-class cruise ship operates Monday through Friday from the port of Miami. During its usual itinerary, it will stop at Nassau, Coco Cay, (an island owned by Royal Caribbean) and Key West before sailing back to Miami.

However, on Friday, the supposedly fun trip turned out to be a terrible one as 66 of its passengers and two crew members got sickened, CNN reported.

"I spent like the whole night on the toilet," said passenger Frank Weinger to Local 10. "It was terrible."

On top of that he never got to see Nassau, Bahamas.

In its company blog post, Royal Caribbean expressed belief that norovirus was behind the outbreak.

Norovirus is a very contagious virus that one can get through contaminated water or food or by touching contaminated things. Once infected, a person may suffer from gastrointestinal disorders like stomachache, diarrhea and even gastroenteritis, or the inflammation of the gastrointestinal tracts.

Acccording to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the norovirus is the most common cause of foodborne-disease outbreaks in the U.S.. It causes 19-21 million cases yearly which contribute to an average of 59,500 hospitalizations and more or less 700 deaths yearly.

On the good side, the individuals who got infected responded well to over-the-counter medications given onboard the cruise ship.

As soon as it got back to port of Miami, the Majesty of the Seas and the cruise terminal went through an extensive and thorough disinfecting to prevent further spread of the illness and its next scheduled sailing.

Passengers who are set to take a cruise in the next couple of days could reschedule their trip to a different day if they feel uncomfortable riding the cruise ship, said the Royal Caribbean.

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