Tonight I received the following message from a Princess Cruises’ passenger just off the Star Princess:
"I just arrived in Vancouver on the Star Princess. Cruise was September 19 – October 4 2015 Vancouver-Hawaii-Vancouver. I contacted the worst type flu of my life on the 21 September afternoon. By the third day I notified Medical Services after 2 days in bed running a unbelievable fever and was given tamiflu medication. I was sick almost the total cruise and was still coughing when I left the Star Princess.
I am a totally healthy individual, normal weight, & have no history of illness in years. Later, I heard many were sick on the ship, the Captain announced 2 separate viruses on board. We were 3 days from returning to Vancouver before they started taking precautions in the dining areas.
We have traveled by ship for many years & all has been great until this trip. The worst & most expensive holiday of my life. The cruise ship needs to be held accountable for their careless hygiene on board & should give some compensation to individuals suffering such a miserable vacation. They keep piling them on larger & larger ships without any regard for the individuals exposed to all the germs being circulated. Extreme cleanliness was exercised only when there is a outbreak on board.
I feel for the elderly who are not in good health & are being exposed to these terrible viruses."
The press in Canada has picked up on the story. CBC News reports that a least one norovirus-stricken Star Princess passenger flew home from Hawaii, instead of cruising back to Canada. When the Princess cruise ship docked this morning in Vancouver, two passengers were transported by ambulance from the dock to hospital with norovirus.
Princess told the newspaper that there were allegedly 78 people infected with norovirus during the two week cruise. The actual number is probably higher than that because many passengers do not report their symptoms and the cruise lines are quick to under-report the disease outbreaks.
Despite the extended outbreak during the last 2 weeks, the Star Princess is scheduled to depart tonight after a so-called "enhanced cleaning."
The Star Princess had a noro outbreak last May.
Princess Cruises has experienced 4 of the last 11 cruise ship norovirus outbreaks reported to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
Photo Credit – Jim Walker