| SAN DIEGO, April 10
SAN DIEGO, April 10 A cruise ship with more than
100 passengers and crew suffering from a gastrointestinal
ailment caused by Norovirus, have arrived in San Diego, a cruise
line spokeswoman said on Thursday.
The Crown Princess, carrying 3,141 passengers in all, docked
in San Diego and planned to continue on to Los Angeles on its
normal itinerary along the coast of California and Northern
Mexico. Onboard testing proved the presence of Norovirus, said
Princess Cruises spokeswoman Karen Candy.
Outbreaks of Norovirus have been reported by nearly a dozen
cruise lines sailing from U.S. ports in recent years, including
Holland America, Celebrity, Cunard Line and a National
Geographic cruise on Lindblad Expeditions.
Travel medicine expert Michael Zimring of Mercy Medical
Center in Baltimore said the outbreaks, while unpleasant, are
"These outbreaks happen because you have more people in a
small area," Zimring said. "Travel means not always
following good hand washing rules, which most people don't
Zimring said buffets on land or sea can be vulnerable to
contamination by the diners themselves.
"People like buffets to get their money's worth, and buffets
are easy for boats to do," he said. "But you see kids sticking
their fingers in things and people sneezing over them all the
Last week, a Royal Caribbean Cruise Line ship, Grandeur of
the Seas, reported an outbreak of Norovirus that sickened 117
passengers and crew during a cruise from Baltimore.
Norovirus is the most common cause of contagious
gastrointestinal illness, with nausea, vomiting and diarrhea as
the most common symptoms. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control
and Prevention estimates that there are about 20 million cases
of Norovirus in the U.S. each year, resulting in 570 to 800
deaths. It usually clears up in one to three days, the CDC says.
(Editing by Cynthia Johnston and Gunna Dickson)