Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Distress Signals From Cruise Lines

The news of the norovirus aboard the Explorer of the Seas (seen in the above photo) distressed me not only because I sailed with my wife and friends aboard the cruise ship to Bermuda in 2012, but also as we plan to sail again on the ship.

As a seasoned sailor who served aboard U.S. Navy ships, including a two-year stint on the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk during the Vietnam War, I thought the Exployer of the Seas was a clean and efficiently run ship. I also have no fear of setting sail on the cruise ship again when we shove off for the Caribbean.

But, as a Philadelphia Inquirer editorial rightly notes, more oversight of the cruise industry is needed.

The Royal Caribbean cruise ship that set sail from a New Jersey port over the weekend may be the most spotless craft plying the waves - having undergone a top-to-bottom scrubbing after a stomach bug sickened nearly 700 passemgers and crew, cutting short the ship's previous getaway.

... The ordeal hardly compared to waht unfolded a year ago after a Carnival ship lost power, leaving it without air-conditioning or working toilets. Far worst was the horrific grounding of a cruise ship off Italy in 2012, which left 32 dead.

But with many likely dreaming of bidding bon voyage to the frozen Northeast aboard a cruise, yet another saga of sickened passengers is a reminder of the need for more official oversight, operator vigilance and customer savvy.

You can read the rest of the Philadelphia Inquirer editorial via the below link:


You can also read my earlier post on the Explorer of the Seas via the below link:


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