Outbreaks on Cruise Ships
When you decide to go on a cruise, you expect it to be all fun, games, and sun. Cruise experiences should be relaxing and joy-filled, but unfortunately, that is not always the case. When there is an illness outbreak on the ship, it is not fun for anyone. In recent years, outbreaks have become all too common for cruise ships all across the country. Cruise companies owe their passengers a duty of care, which includes warning them of the risk of outbreaks and doing all they can to prevent an outbreak from happening. When outbreaks do happen, they are usually sparked by contaminated food. For example, a passenger can contract Norovirus, a common illness on cruise ships, through contaminated food and water and then pass it along through physical contact. On a ship with over a hundred passengers, a contagious illness can mean disaster. Illnesses common to cruise ships include the following:
- Norovirus: As previously stated, Norovirus is typically spread through contaminated food and water, as well as physical contact. Norovirus is common on cruise ships, with the number of cases continually growing. Symptoms of Norovirus include nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, cramping, fever, and muscle pain.
- Food poisoning: Illness can result from eating contaminated food. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, cramping, and fever. Symptoms can arise hours, days, or even weeks after consuming the contaminated food.
- coli: These bacteria are typically in raw or undercooked beef or vegetables. Symptoms include diarrhea, cramping or tenderness, nausea, and vomiting. Symptoms can arise over a week after consumption.
- Salmonella: Illness results from eating contaminated food, usually raw or undercooked meat, eggs, or poultry products. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, cramps, diarrhea, fever, chills, headache, and bloody stool. Symptoms can arise up to two days after consumption of contaminated food.
- Legionnaires’ disease: This illness typically results from inhaling legionella bacteria, which can grow in warm water. It is commonly found in large heating and plumbing systems, such as those found in hot tubs and swimming pools. Symptoms include headache, muscle pain, chills, high fever, shortness of breath, chest pain, confusion, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. Symptoms usually arise within 10 days of exposure. This disease is potentially fatal.
The diseases listed above most commonly result on cruise ships because of crew negligence. Norovirus, food poisoning, E.coli, and salmonella most typically occur because kitchen staff members failed to properly prepare or inspect food that is served to guests. Legionella bacteria can grow in plumbing systems that are not properly maintained or heated to the correct temperature, another instance of crew or company negligence.
If you or a loved one was affected by an illness outbreak on a cruise ship, contact Louis A. Vucci, P.A.. Some of these illnesses can have long lasting effects and devastating health consequences. As the victim of a cruise ship illness outbreak, you may be entitled to compensation. Our attorneys will fight to get you the money you need. To discuss the details of your case, contact our office at (786) 375-0344 today.