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Norovirus Sickens Hundreds in Two More Cruise Ship Outbreaks

People excitedly plan for their cruise vacations for months, if not years. They purchase outfits in anticipation of their formal evenings and make sure that they have enough casual clothes to attend the various events, excursions, and midnight buffets. With this in mind, the last thing a person looking forward to a cruise vacation thinks about is what he or she should bring to stay confined to the cabin while sick. However, this is exactly what happened to more than 600 passengers and crew members onboard the Royal Caribbean’s Explorer of the Sea and nearly 200 passengers and crew on the Caribbean Princess, one of Princess Cruises’ ships, in cruises leaving port at the end of January 2014.

Cruise ships make billions of dollars, much of it tax-free, every year, but do not effectively prevent outbreaks that make thousands of people seriously ill each year. The experienced Miami cruise ship accident attorneys at Greenberg Stone and Urbano understand the complex organizational structure of cruise ships and can get victims of cruise industry negligence the compensation that they deserve. It should be cautioned that cases involving sickness on a cruise ship are not wlays worth bring a claim for. You should consult with a lawyer about your possible claim. Cruise line tickets limit the time within you must report a claim and file suit significantly. The tickets ofter determine in what venue, City and Court, cases may be brought. Many cruise lines, regardless of where in the world negligence occurred, require that the claim be brought in Miami, Fl, our home city.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reported that Norovirus had sickened the Explorer of the Seas and that this outbreak ranked among the most extensive outbreak in the last twenty years. Norovirus results in severe vomiting and diarrhea and is highly contagious. The CDC stated that there was no source identified for the outbreak and that the cause might never be known. The outbreak on the cruise ships was caused by a strain of norovirus originating in Sydney, Australia.

According to the CDC, norovirus is the leading cause of gastroenteritis and is spread by coming in contact with contaminated individuals, consuming contaminated food, or touching contaminated surfaces. The CDC reports that ninety percent (90%) of outbreaks on cruise ships where the passengers suffer from gastrointestinal distress are the result of norovirus. The reason for this is the rapid turnover of passengers, tight living spaces, common dining areas, and the potential for contaminated food or water being brought onboard. In addition, passengers may be exposed to the virus while on shore and then bring it back onto the ship. However, there also is the possibility that infected crew members or environmental contamination lead to repeated outbreaks. Norovirus is not killed by many common cleaners and disinfectants, so if the ship’s cleaning protocol is not sufficient, the virus will not be eradicated.

As for the most recent cruise ship outbreaks, the Caribbean Princess returned to port two days early; however, the cruise line announced that this decision was the result of a forecast of fog in the final port of call rather than a reaction to the norovirus outbreak onboard the ship. Passengers reported that the ship requested that they remain confined to their cabins after they became ill, according to a CNN article. What is known is that more than 800 people on two different cruise ships had their vacations ruined by illness and thousands more did not get the trip that they had planned.

South Florida Cruise Ship Accident Attorneys Fight for Their Clients

Cruise ships can offer a wonderful vacation, but when that great trip leads to serious illness or injury, the skilled cruise ship accident attorneys at Greenberg Stone and Urbano understand how to get justice for our clients. With more than 100 years of collective experience successfully representing our clients’ interests against the powerful international cruise industry, our attorneys have the expertise to get our clients the compensation that they deserve. In fact, they have earned the honorable distinction of being “Superlawyers,” a title which ranks them as among the best lawyers in America. The South Florida Cruise Ship Accident Lawyers of Greenberg Stone and Urbano have also been rated “AV” by Martindale Hubbell and have been voted “South Florida’s Top Rated Lawyers” by the Miami Herald. Moreover, we are also invited members of Primerus, an international society of leading law firms. Call us at (888) 499-9700 or (305) 595-2400 or visit our website to set a time where we can sit down and discuss what happened to you.

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