Coral Princess – COVID-19 Cruise Ship Docks in Miami
The Coral Princess, another cruise ship infected with COVID-19, docked in Miami today (Fox). With two deaths on board, along with at least 7 passengers and 5 crew members testing positive, the ship had no choice but to stop its cruise. It was originally sailing from San Antonio, Chile on March 5, but passengers hadn’t touched land since March 13.
They found quickly that the cruise ship had no place to dock, and passengers reportedly packed their bags several times along their way. They finally were able to get permission to dock in Miami.
Passengers were required to self-isolate in their rooms after the Coronavirus was found on board.
“Disembarkation for guests who are fit to fly is anticipated to begin on Sunday, April 5. These guests will transfer direct from the ship to Miami International Airport for flights home. Those with any respiratory symptoms, or who are still recovering from being ill previously, will remain on board until medically cleared by the ship’s doctors.” Princess Cruises statement
There were 1,020 passengers aboard the ship, with 878 crew. The ship was previously denied entry into US waters for Port Everglades because they didn’t have an approved plan for disembarking the passengers. It was finally granted access to Port of Miami with the above plan in place. It was originally set to disembark at Fort Lauderdale.
Each passenger was required to fill out a form regarding their symptoms.
The Miami Herald reported,
“Paul Nahm, whose parents are on board and sick, is worried they won’t pass a medical check and be cleared to fly home to New York.
His mother, 72-year-old Grace Nahm, got sick first, then his dad, 71-year-old Peter Nahm.
They were both tested for COVID-19. Peter’s test came back positive first, but they’re still waiting on Grace’s test.
Princess told Paul it’s because they sent his dad’s tests, along with 11 others, to Barbados and sent his mom’s test to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.
Paul said last night, his parents put him on speakerphone as a crew member came into their cabin and tried to separate them into different rooms. His parents were panicking, he said, because Peter hadn’t gotten any medical care in three days and only ate and drank because his wife helped him.
The crew member eventually agreed to not separate the couple, but told them they needed to sign a waiver accepting the risk. The crew member told his parents that if they signed the waiver they would not receive medical care on the ship going forward.
Paul called it “atrocious” and said he’s complained to Princess Cruises for days.
“The only reason Princess gets back to me is because I’m blowing up Twitter,” he said. “They say ‘please can you keep it to DM’.”
Governor DeSantis has not been happy with these ships docking in Florida, as he is well aware that it will increase the number of beds needed. He would have preferred to keep the available beds for Floridians, and not spread the disease further throughout the state. But in the interests of humanitarian needs, he has allowed them.
Featured photo: The Coral Princess cruise ship