Royal Caribbean’s Vision of the Seas experienced a norovirus outbreak on its recent 11-day cruise. The outbreak affected over 100 of the almost 2000 guests and several crew members, which is just over 5% of those onboard. Those ill were treated with over the counter medications. The ship docked in Port Everglades last Friday at the end of its voyage. It was extensively cleaned and sanitized, and prepared to leave for its next trip as planned later that day.
Norovirus spreads through contaminated food and water, via contaminated surfaces, and through person-to-person transmission- meaning quite easily onboard cruise ships due to the close proximity of the occupants, just as it does in schools and long term care facilities. According to the CDC, there were 16 outbreaks onboard cruise ships during 2012. The outbreak onboard the P&O cruise ship Oriana that sickened approximately 400 people last December has resulted in legal action, with 32 passengers being represented by a law firm seeking answers as to how the outbreak occurred.