This morning I received an email from a reader of Cruise Law News who said that the Princess Cruises' Caribbean Princess cruise ship will be arriving in Houston tomorrow night 36 hours or so early due to a norovirus outbreak.
This evening the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that the Caribbean Princess has suffered an outbreak affecting the following people infected during its current January 25th - February 1st cruise:
- 162 of 3102 passengers (5.22%); and
- 11 of 1148 crew members (0.96%)
The CDC has not yet announced the type of pathogens involved in this latest cruise ship infection.
A Houston newspaper said the virus was norovirus.
The newspaper also said that Princess Cruises issued a statement today saying "that the trip was cut short by one day because of thick fog expected over the weekend."
Princess Cruises was recently featured in Time Magazine's Top 13 Worst cruise Ship Norovirus Outbreaks.
Princess Cruises had five of the worst outbreaks: Crown Princess (January 2010) - 396; Crown Princess (February 2012) - 363; Ruby Princess (March 2013) - 276; Coral Princess (February 2009) - 271; and Sun Princess (July 2012) - 216.
The last gastrointestinal illness outbreak on a Princess cruise ship involved the Diamond Princess just two weeks ago.
How is Princess handing this latest outbreak? Leave a comment below or join the discussion on our Facebook page.
January 30, 2014 Update: Cruise expert Professor Ross Klein received information from cruise passengers indicating that there were problems with norovirus on the prior cruise:
"From a reader: Passengers have been notified that during the current cruise there has been an increase in the number of cases of gastrointestinal illness amongst passengers caused by Norovirus. In response, we have arranged for the ship to undergo a prolonged and additional disinfection in Houston on Saturday, January 11, 2014. As a consequence, cruise check-in and embarkation will be delayed until 2:00 pm.
This was also noted by a passenger who just disembarked the ship who said, "Cabins on both sides of us had to be sanitized due the passengers being sick."
January 31, 2014 Update: "Blame Game: Princess Accuses Passengers of Starting Norovirus Outbreak on Caribbean Princess." "Not our fault" says the PR people at Princess Cruises. How about letting the experts conclude their investigation first?
Photo Credit: Wikipedia / Yankeesman312