- At least 10 people tested positive for COVID-19 on the Norwegian Breakaway cruise ship as it headed to port in New Orleans this weekend.
- More than 3,200 people were aboard the ship, which made stops in Belize, Honduras, and Mexico, according to the Louisiana Department of Health.
- Anyone who tests positive upon disembarking from the ship will have to immediately return home in a vehicle or self-isolate in accommodations provided by Norwegian Cruise Line.
At least 10 people aboard a Norwegian Cruise Line ship tested positive for COVID-19 as it made its way to port in New Orleans, the Louis ana Department of Health announced Saturday.
Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards, the city of New Orleans, and the Port of New Orleans were working with the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention “to initiate existing COVID-19 agreements and protocols with the cruise line,” according to an news release from the agency.
The Louisana Department of Health did not immediately return Insider’s request for comment.
The 7-day cruise made stops in Honduras, Belize, and Mexico, according to the release. There were more than 3,200 passengers aboard the vessel during the cruise, the health department said. The cruise departed from New Orleans on November 28 and was expected to dock there Sunday.
“All of the identified cases onboard are asymptomatic,” a spokesperson for Norwegian Cruise Line said in a statement to Insider. “In addition to requiring that 100% of guests and crew are fully vaccinated, per the Company’s comprehensive health and safety protocols, we have implemented quarantine, isolation and contact tracing procedures for identified cases.”
Passengers who test positive for the disease will be required to travel directly to their personal residence in a personal vehicle upon disembarking Sunday, the cruise line said, or will be required to self-isolate in accommodations provided by the company, it said.
“The health and safety of our guests, crew and the communities we visit is our highest priority, and we will continue to take all appropriate actions to ensure their wellbeing and protect public health,” the Norwegian Cruise Line spokesperson said.
The CDC has warned against traveling on cruise ships during the COVID-19 pandemic, saying the “chance of getting COVID-19 on cruise ships is high because the virus spreads easily between people in close quarters aboard ships.”
For those individuals who do choose to go on a cruise vacation, the CDC recommends being tested for COVID-19 1-2 days prior to the trip and 3-5 days after returning home, regardless of a person’s vaccination status, according to its guidelines.