Two Costa Cruises ships with some thirty crew members with flu symptoms are approaching the shores of Miami, without so far the county authorities have said whether they will allow them to disembark in the midst of the global crisis due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Costa, which belongs to the Carnival corporation, confirmed Thursday that the Favolosa and Magic ships are heading to Miami and “will proceed to the medical disembarkation of the crew members who need hospital care, in cooperation with local authorities.”
The company said the ships “will remain outside the Port of Miami” until Saturday, while they organize air travel back to Europe and Asia to repatriate most of the crew members.
“Only a small number will remain on board the two ships to carry out all the necessary tasks,” Costa said.
However, local authorities have not ruled on what will happen to these ships that were denied landing at “several” Caribbean ports, according to Costa.
Just as these two cruises, Holland America’s Zandaam, with at least 77 people with flu symptoms, and Princess Cruises’ Coral Princess, “with no confirmed cases of COVID-19,” are trying to dock at state ports. , where at least 28 people have died due to the pandemic.
Carnival, based in Miami, told Efe on Thursday that there are a total of six ships from a fleet of more than one hundred cruises owned by this American company that will seek to dock during this weekend.
Roger Frizzell, director of communications for Carnival, said it is a “difficult” task due to the closure of ports due to the COVID-19 crisis.
Frizzell said that these are cruises that made long itineraries, some “around the world”, when the company announced the suspension of travel.
Most major shipping companies, including Royal Caribbean Cruises and Norwegian, suspended all but the ongoing voyages in mid-March after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. It is recommended not to travel on cruises as a preventive measure against the coronavirus.
He noted that the two Costa ships have only crew members on board and are seeking to disembark these individuals to return to their homes.
After a tour of the Caribbean and leaving tourists at various ports, some of them carrying the COVID-19, both ships are approaching Miami with at least 30 crew members with flu-like symptoms, according to press reports.
On board the Favolosa there are 1,009 people and another 930 in the Magica.
For its part, Holland America, from the Carnival group, reported this week that Zandaam plans to arrive next Monday at Port Everglades, in the city of Fort Lauderdale, some 42 kilometers north of Miami, with at least 77 of its 1,829 passengers and crew members with flu-like symptoms.
Meanwhile, the Coral Princess expects to arrive on April 5 at Port Everglades with 1,720 tourists on board and “with no known risk of COVID-19”.
These four ships intend to reach the Port of Miami or the Everglades, in Miami-Dade and Broward counties, respectively, which account for half of the 2,355 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Florida, 28 of which have been fatal, according to the latest report from the state Department of Health.