Port of San Diego

Cruise Ship Disembarks at Port of San Diego With More Than 800 Passengers

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Maasdam, a Holland America Line, arrived at the Port of San Diego Thursday with over 800 passengers, the Port of SD said.

The Port of SD said that there were no reports of illnesses on board for the 834 passengers. The ship is scheduled to disembark on Friday and Saturday.

The Maasdam disembarked in New Zealand in early March before cruise ships were halted due to the pandemic. Maasdam tried to disembark in Honolulu, Hawaii but was denied by officials. An exception was made for six Hawaii residents and two other U.S. citizens for medical reasons who disembarked at that port, the Port of SD said.

“The local CDC quarantine station has the lead in determining if it’s safe for individuals to disembark from any cruise ship that has been in international waters,” Dr. Eric McDonald, Medical Director with the County Epidemiology and Immunization Branch said.

No ship has or will be allowed in San Diego Bay without first being cleared by the Port, San Diego County health officials, the CDC, the Coast Guard, and Customs and Border Protection, Port of SD said.

Since last week, the port did install handwashing stations for the passengers who disembark a ship. They will also disinfect the port before and after each ship disembarks.

They remind the public that they may see cruise ships at the dock, or anchoring in and around San Diego Bay until at least mid-April.

On March 19, a Disney Cruise ship pulled into the Port of San Diego over 1,900 passengers, county officials confirmed.

The Disney Wonder pulled into the Port of San Diego at around 6:15 a.m. It left New Orleans on March 6 on what was supposed to be a 14-night Panama Canal Cruise with several stops in Mexico, Cayman Islands, and Colombia.

However, to minimize passenger exposure to the coronavirus, Disney Wonder skipped several port visits. That decision came after Cruise Lines International Association asked U.S. cruise ships to suspend cruises for 30 days as of March 14, voluntarily.

None of the 1,980 passengers or crew, with the exception of one crew member who had influenza, showed COVID-19 symptoms, said McDonald.

The crew member tested positive for Influenza A and B and has been transported to a local hospital for treatment, Brianne Page with the Port of SD said.

A San Diego County resident who was a passenger aboard the Disney Wonder has tested positive for COVID-19, McDonald said.

If any of the passengers did begin to show symptoms, the crew was required to notify the U.S. Coast Guard and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

It is now recommended by the CDC for all cruise ship passengers throughout the country to self-quarantine after disembarking from a ship, McDonald said.

On March 18, Holland America Line MS Eurodam disembarked with 1,839 passengers and 61 crew members at the Port of San Diego. None showed symptoms for COVID-19 and were given the OK to go home, McDonald said.

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