In the move that effectively bans cruise lines from boarding passengers or returning to sailing in the near future, the US Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) has announced the extension of a “no sail order” for 100 days or until health authorities declare the coronavirus pandemic over.
Around 100 cruise ships in the Atlantic, Pacific or Gulf of Mexico must now remain idle, either in port or wallowing at anchor. Those ships currently have nearly 80,000 crew aboard.
Cruise ship lines have voluntarily suspended most operations, leaving a small number of ships left at sea with passengers aboard. Many have struggled to find ports that will allow their passengers to disembark.
Officials also launched a broadside at cruise lines, saying that at least ten ships have reported crew or passengers that tested positive or experienced respiratory symptoms or influenza-like illness in recent weeks.