Crown PrincessThe Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that 158 of 3,009 passengers (5.25%) and 14 of 1,160 crew members (1.21%) aboard the Crown Princess cruise ship have been sickened with norovirus.

The CDC website says that a Vessel Sanitation Program (VSA) environmental health officer will board the Princess cruise ship in San Pedro, California today to assess the situation.

The last reported norovirus outbreak also involved the Crown Princess, In April we reported on a large outbreak of the nasty bug.  122 passengers and 30 crew members suffered a bout of vomiting and diarrhea. You can read our article about that outbreak here.

You can read about the numerous other norovirus outbreaks on the Crown Princess here. There have been five outbreaks on this ship in just 4 years,

Photo Credit: Wikipedia / CB2379 Creative Commons 3.0

A video about one of the prior Crown Princess noro-outbreak is below:

 

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  • valerie Hathorn

    My personal opinion is that the cause of the norovirus virus habitually breaking out is that A)There not cleaning the ship properly after an outbreak, one day or few hours on a ship the size of a city is not enough time clean & sanitize so there sacrificing health to keep the money rolling in. B) maybe Norovirus is a cute name for “Food Poisoning ” because of improper food handling. C) making crew members work when there sick. I would be why to pissed if I spent money to have a nice vacation and spend the whole week tossing my cookies.

  • John Goldsmith

    This story made the news in Canada today.
    One question often asked is this.
    Does the CDC have enough power to enforce the standards for cleaning of a vessel this size?
    Is there a time frame for a proper cleaning and sterilizing of the ship?
    and lastly….Are the ships crew checked out as well?
    I for one, would like to know….
    Thanks

  • Barbara Richards

    Personally I think the ships are fine when boarded. It’s the 3000 plus passengers that create the Norovirus making everyone else sick as well as the crew. Norovirus is spread by people not washing their hands, touching the utensils at the buffets, etc. The personal hygiene of some I’m sure are just awful. You can’t have that many people on a ship without spreading stuff around with such close contact with one another. I think it’s a miracle more ships don’t have this problem and that there aren’t any fatalities from it. I think the idea of a huge cruise ship (and they’re getting larger) is bad. It’s fun to travel by boat, but not with so many people like that where there is sickness and crime. Cruising is just, quite simply, a very bad idea. And yes, I’ve been on a few.

  • Askacaptainswife

    I am currently on board on the Crown Princess and wanted to comment and rectify some of the points mentioned in this article and some above comments, which tends to over exaggerate the actual situation. Norovirus easily spreads in closed environments such as cruise ships however can be prevented by regular hand wash and looking after one’s own personal hygiene. As a result of effective sanitation procedures Norovirus can be easily eliminated which in other environments such as schools, hospitals and hotels might take weeks. The actual percentage of affected passengers did not exceed 4% of 3500 passengers during the whole time and affected crew was only 0,5% of 1200 crew. On arrival only 10 passengers were symptomatic. Thanks to hard work and excellent team effort of entire Crown Princess officers and crew, the whole ship was successfully sanitized and heading now towards new adventures.

    This article also forgets to mention that during this 28 day cruise the passengers enjoyed an extra overnight on Papeete and had two days time to explore the Island of Tahiti instead scheduled one day visit. Due to additional stop in Marques Island to land the medical emergency, the passengers did also receive one free extra day onboard.

    My advise is not to be discouraged by fear of getting ill, cruising is an excellent, fun and safe way to enjoy your holiday.

    If you want to find out the real story or should you need any additional information regarding this or any other questions regarding cruises or planning one, I am happy to assist you on http://www.askacaptainswife.com.

  • Ms. “Askacaptainswife:”

    Your Internet Provider (IP) address indicates that your comment came from Princess’ headquarters in Valencia, California.

    Perhaps you should disclose that next time.

  • Dear Mr. Walker,

    I would like to confirm that I am an independent cruise consultant/specialist and no way associated with Princess Cruises.

    The origin of the IP address may be due that I am currently on board the Crown Princess and using their WIFI network on board. Please refer to my website for further details.

  • Kristoffer
  • Adventurers

    We just returned from the Crown Princess on November 22nd. It was announced over the PA system Nov 21st that only 36 passengers and 9 crew members contracted the Norovirus on the sailing (Nov 16-22). They went to great measures to try and keep any flu/virus from spreading by hand sanitizer machines outside every dining area and the buffet was served by the staff with gloves on, not self serve as usual. They also suggested we use our own bathroom instead of public restrooms.

    We were notified about the outbreak and clean up. We were also informed of the day and port missed due to the crew member’s emergency requiring the ship to return to the previous port. We were compensated with onboard credits for both.

    We opted to get a hotel room in LA instead of trying to change our airfare. The cost difference was drastic to change our airfare. But someone above mentioned the previous sailing got an extra day on the ship. Most of those people HAD to pay to get their airfare changed. On board credits don’t pay for airfare changes.

  • H.C.

    My family was on board the same ship on 11/22/2014, same date as the poster above. While we can see that there are sanitizer machine at all the entry point before getting food, I think the cruise ship actually missed the fundamental problem – cleanliness of our rooms. Below is what I have complaint to their customer relation but yet have not heard from a real response. Hopefully this will help someone in making a decision in term of booking this ship and improvement from Crown Princess.
    ***************
     A few days prior to boarding, we have seen on the news that this ship had norovirus outbreak twice. And it
    appeared that Princess could not clean the ship in time so our departure was delayed by 6 hours. We lost 6 hours of
    enjoyment on the ship without any compensation. It would be worth it if the ship was cleaned thoroughly, we thought.
     After we have unpacked in our staterooms, I started to check the pillows and beds to make sure they are clean.
    To my surprise, the pillow covers had mold on them. Each stateroom had 4 pillows. Two staterooms had total 8
    pillows and 3 of them had mold on them. I was surprised to see that the mold on the pillow cases happened to be on
    the back/bottom side of the pillow. If I had not turn them over, I would not see them. Is that the standard practice of
    Princess cruise – as long as the passenger does not see, it is clean? The bed sheet for both rooms had black stains
    which seemed like shoe marks at the time. The quilt cover in one room had yellow/red stain. The toilet seat in one
    room had what looked like human waste residue. The show curtains for both staterooms had black “stuff” on them.
    (See pictures attached and you can zoom-in for better details). This is absolutely unacceptable and very filthy,
    considering that we actually were delayed so that Princess can do a better job of cleaning the ship and rid of
    norovirus. We tried to page house cleaning twice and no one responded. I guess due to the late boarding, all crew
    members were busy doing “something”.
     After 1 night of sleeping in the dirty environment, my wife started to develop symptom of what appeared to be
    norovirus on the second night. I had to send her to emergency room. The doctor initially ruled out norovirus because
    my wife had not had diarrhea yet. But she started to have minor diarrhea on the 3
    out of our own pocket for the doctor visit but this should have been Princess’ responsibility.
    mistakes, etc). Services were slow in the restaurant and room-service was non-existent. Calls to room-service
    were never picked up. There was a long wait just getting into the restaurant. All these were signs that there were
    not enough crew/service people to handle the customers.
     At 2:30AM in one night on board, there was a public announcement to the whole ship. It woke me up thinking
    there was an emergency. I called passenger service (which took a while) and was told that the announcement were
    to the crews which did not concern us. 10 minutes later, another announcement was made again to cancel the first
    announcement. This 2
    nd
    announcement had waked my daughter up.

    We had total of 4 families on this cruise. The wives of 3 families all got sick (vomits or other symptoms). Two of the
    4 families went onto cruises many times and this was first time for us and the other family. We were told that other
    cruises were not like this, especially this level of unsanitary environment.

    Pictures can be downloaded/seen here:
    https://app.box.com/s/0zi6s9vzqdlduzuv8p4y