CHARLESTON, SC – A very popular cruise line isn’t going to get many positive reviews after a recent incident!
A recent Celebrity Cruise trip into the Caribbean turned out to one to forget for roughly 350 people. Cynthia Martinez, spokeswoman for Celebrity Cruise, said that 326 of the more than 1,800 passengers began complaining Sunday of upset stomachs vomiting and diarrhea. She also reported that 27 of about 850 crew members experienced similar symptoms.
The ship, the Celebrity Mercury, left Charleston on February 15. It was the first departure in a newly-expanded year-round schedule of cruises from South Carolina as the industry expands in the state.
It is still unclear what caused the outbreak. Norovirus is often a common cause for similar symptoms that sweep closed quarters on cruise ships. A clear determination will have to wait until samples that were dropped off in Puerto Rico are tested.
The 12-day Caribbean cruise is expected to return Friday after stopping at various islands in the Caribbean including Puerto Rico, St. Thomas, St. Maarten, St. Kitts and the British Virgin Islands. Celebrity brought on an additional doctor and two nurses Monday to assist the ship’s existing medical team.
“Sick passengers will be given a certificate to be used toward a future cruise,” said Martinez. The value of the voucher will be “based on the number of days a guest is isolated divided by the total of cruise fare paid.”