Last December, a highly contagious gastrointestinal illness struck down hundreds of cruise passengers aboard multiple ships. The illness is Norovirus. The first was the Ovation of the Seas where the virus caused more than 200 people became sick. Doctors hospitalized five passengers. Then, the Independence of the Seas ship returned to Port Everglades, Florida with 332 affected individuals.
Norovirus infection occurs most frequently in closed and crowded environments such as hospitals, nursing homes, child care centers, schools and cruise ships. Because there are multiple strains of the virus and the fact that the body does not produce a strong immune response to the infection, experts believe it is possible to contract norovirus infection more than once in a lifetime.
Norovirus is a highly contagious infection that can cause the sudden onset of severe vomiting and diarrhea. It is commonly spread through food or water prepared on a contaminated surface or in close contact with an infected person. The virus is shed in the feces of infected humans and animals.
Norovirus on Cruise Ships
Cruise ships are the ideal breeding grounds for Norovirus. Hundreds of people in close quarters touching the same handrails, buffet utensils, and elevator buttons. This raises the chance of spreading. The CDC lists Norovirus as the culprit in more than 90% of diarrheal-related outbreaks on cruise ships. According to their Vessel Sanitation program, this virus victimizes almost 10% of all cruise ships. This percentage keeps growing.
In 2010, a norovirus outbreak swept through the Celebrity Mercury. It didn’t happen once but THREE times. During the journey, 1 in 5 passengers ended up with horrible vomiting and gastrointestinal symptoms. This is turning into a common occurrence. There have already been eight outbreaks of gastrointestinal sickness on cruise lines in the first two and a half months of this year. Compare that to 2009 and 2008, when there were just 15 outbreaks each during the entire year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Get Help From a Complex Litigation Attorney
A cruise experience is supposed to be a joyous vacation from your everyday life. It isn’t meant to be stressful or painful. If you are the victim of an accident or injury, contact the dedicated professionals at The Michael Brady Lynch Firm.
The Michael Brady Lynch Firm has successfully represented thousands of consumers and recovered millions of dollars for their clients. Our team of attorneys has been recognized as some of the most experienced and successful in the country. Our award-winning staff is also sought after for our knowledge on complex litigation, scientific evidence development, negotiation strategies and trial tactics.
Most of all, our law office is resourceful and dedicated to pursuing any compensation you are due. Because of this, we have received a high degree of peer recognition and professional achievement, such as inclusion on numerous Plaintiff Steering Committees. We will take whatever legal measures are necessary when fighting for your rights to damages.
Act fast to be able to get the most out of your claim. Cruise ships negligence cannot go unpunished. It is important to note that after an injury to take photographic evidence of the area.