Hundreds of Royal Caribbean cruise passengers get sick

During the five-night cruise, 332 cases of illness were reported, Owen Torres, a spokesman for Royal Caribbean, told CNN in a statement. He stressed that it was a minimum percentage of – 5.99% – of the more than 5,000 passengers and crew aboard the ship, the Independence of the Seas.

“Those affected by the short-term illness were treated by our ship’s doctors with over-the-counter medications,” Torres said, “and we hope that all of our clients will feel better quickly.”

Officials do not know what caused the outbreak.

“It was terrifying,” Tracy Flores, a passenger whose 15-year-old son was affected by the disease, told CNN affiliate WPLG on Saturday. “Only the number of people who arrived at the same time with vomit and diarrhea and looked fatal.”

WPLG reported that some passengers who disembarked Saturday in Port Everglades, Florida, believed that the number of patients was greater than Royal Caribbean said.

“Talk to a lot of people who said they were too sick even to get to medical facilities (of the ship),” passenger Marsha Homuska told CNN affiliate WSVN.

Torres, the spokesman for Royal Caribbean, told CNN that the company is “taking steps such as intensive sanitary procedures to minimize the risk of any subsequent problems,” and that the ship “will undergo additional special cleaning procedures before departing its next trip”.

“We encourage our guests and crew to wash their hands often, which health experts recommend as a better defense against stomach viruses, which affect some 300 million people around the world each year,” said Torres, adding that “only the common cold has a greater incidence “.

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