US Cruise Lines Detail A ‘100% Safety Plan’ To Help Resume Sailings

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  • A trade group that represents most major cruise lines has unveiled a list of proposed safety measures it plans to put in place when U.S. sailings resume.
  • CLIA said that its members will also require passengers and crew to wear masks while onboard whenever physical distancing can’t be maintained.
  • The safety plan requires testing of passengers and crew, but doesn’t specify the types of coronavirus tests that companies must use.
  • The plan also requires ships to increase the amount of fresh air in their ventilation systems and use advanced filtration methods where feasible.
  • The safety agreement is an unusual one in the fiercely competitive industry, which has been seriously shaken by the coronavirus.
  • CLIA says the U.S. cruise industry supports more than 400,000 jobs and generates $53 billion annually.

Major cruise lines say they will test all passengers and crew for COVID-19 prior to boarding as part of their plan for resuming sailing in the Americas, reports Japan Today.

Stringent measures onboard

The Cruise Lines International Association, a trade group that represents 95% of global ocean-going cruise capacity, said that its members will also require passengers and crew to wear masks while onboard whenever physical distancing can not be maintained.

No date has been set for the resumption of cruising in the Americas.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a no-sail order for U.S. waters through September 30. The association’s safety plan will now go to the CDC, which will consider it as the agency decides whether to lift the no-sail order. The order has been extended twice since March.

The cruise association has issued a voluntary suspension of cruises through October 31. In a conference call, Arnold Donald, the president and CEO of Carnival Corp., said once the CDC lifts its order, it will probably take cruise lines at least a month to prepare their ships and train crew before they can sail.

COVID-19 safety plan

  • The safety plan requires testing of passengers and crew, but doesn’t specify the types of coronavirus tests that companies must use, CLIA Chairman Adam Goldstein said. It also doesn’t make clear that test results must be known before the ship sails.
  • The plan permits limited shore excursions and requires passengers to wear masks and stay apart from other people during those excursions. Passengers who don’t comply won’t be allowed to reboard.
  • The plan also requires ships to increase the amount of fresh air in their ventilation systems and use advanced filtration methods where feasible.

Cruise company executives said the limited resumption of cruising in Europe over the last few weeks has convinced them that cruising can be done safely.

The safety agreement is an unusual one in the fiercely competitive industry, which has been seriously shaken by the coronavirus.

Hundreds of people fell ill aboard crowded cruises earlier this year before the no-sail order went into effect. Since then, the industry has furloughed thousands of workers.

We all share the same goal, and we’re going to get there through collaboration, not competition,” said Richard Fain, Royal Caribbean Cruise’s chairman and CEO.

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Source: Japan Today

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