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Cruise ships can set sail on Sunday, but only with the crew

Observers will monitor and evaluate the simulated routes to ensure compliance, he added. “If the result is not as desired, one has to ask: is the plan not good enough or is the implementation not good enough?” Dr Cetron said. “It is a virus that can be very ruthless on mistakes.”

“We all recognize that this virus is a formidable enemy, and we will live with it for a while, and we have to adapt our systems to have maximum impact,” he added.

Ships will have fewer guests than in the past, and crew and passengers would be required to wear masks and maintain social distancing, Dr Cetron said. Initially, new crew members joining a ship would not only be tested before boarding, but also quarantined for 14 days. The crew would also be quarantined for 14 days before disembarking.

Quarantines would not apply to passengers, however. The CDC said passengers would instead be tested twice before boarding, he said. The guidelines will continue to be improved and “tweaked” along the way, he added.

The world’s major cruise lines have been idle for months under bans on sailing as the pandemic swept the world, after tourists and crews aboard ships like the Diamond Princess docked and pulled up. were left stranded for weeks as infection rates soared on board.

Many cruise lines, such as Royal Caribbean, had already announced that they would resume navigation at least in December. Some have canceled future crossings – Carnival Cruise, for example, canceled all crossings until December 31, as well as some crossings in 2021 and 2022. But cases reaching record levels in the US and European countries committing to new lockdowns with outbreaks of infections spreading, an imminent return of cruise ship travel remains uncertain.

The ban on navigation order has been extended several times since March, but is expected to expire on Saturday.

The CDC’s website says scientific evidence suggests that cruise ships – which bring together travelers from around the world to live closely with crew members, where social distancing is difficult to maintain – “pose a greater risk. higher transmission of Covid 19 than other parameters ”. and that epidemics on board cruise ships “pose a risk of rapid spread of disease beyond travel and into communities around the world”.

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