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108 People Hit with Norovirus on a Royal Caribbean Cruise Ship

Travelers Today       By    Katie McFadden

Updated: Mar 08, 2013 05:43 PM EST

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monarch of the seas royal caribbean
Man overboard! Yet another cruise ship passenger seems to have gone overboard. A 65-year-old Canadian cruise ship passenger disappeared from a Royal Caribbean ship and now crews are on the search around the British Caribbean territory. (Photo : Wikimedia)

More than 100 people feel sick with norovirus on a Royal Caribbean cruise ship this week.

Many passengers on the 1,991 passenger Vision of the Seas to the Caribbean came down with the illness on board. There were 105 sick passengers and three sick crew members who were believed to have the gastrointestinal illness, norovirus, Reuters reports.

Norovirus is an illness that causes an inflammation in the stomach or intestine. This condition, called acute gastroenteritis causes stomach pain, nausea and diarrhea.

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According to Royal Caribbean, those who fell ill were given an over-the-counter medicine which helped. The ship docked in Port Everglades, Florida on Friday after an 11-day trip. The ship and the cruise terminal were thoroughly sanitized before it left for its next sailing late Friday.

Norovius outbreaks are not rare of cruise ships and many cruise lines take proper sanitary precautions to prevent passengers from getting sick. It is not clear what the source of this latest outbreak was. This latest incident is yet another problem that the cruise industry has faced lately.

"It adds insult to injury and comes during high-booking season," Morningstar analyst Jaime Katz told Reuters. Winter and early spring is a peak time for those who book cruises.

Royal Caribbean already noticed a drop in shares

This incident comes a month after thousands of passengers were left stranded on the Carnival Triumph after an engine room fire disabled the boat in the middle of the Gulf of Mexico. Passengers were subject to horrendous conditions such as no usable toilets, limited food, no air conditioning and sleeping on decks as the boat was pulled back to a port  in Mobile, Alabama by tugboats.

In December, more than 200 people came down with norovirus on the luxury cruise chip Queen Mary 2. Many were left vomiting and had diarrhea.

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