50 test positive for COVID-19 on Royal Caribbean’s Odyssey of the Seas

December 22, 2021
A dock worker waits for the Royal Caribbean’s Odyssey of The Seas to pull into its berthing spot at Port Everglades on June 10, 2021 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.
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Three passengers and 47 crew members have tested positive for COVID-19 on Royal Caribbean’s Odyssey of the Seas cruise ship, which departed Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on Saturday for an eight-night Caribbean trip, a spokesperson for Royal Caribbean told USA TODAY.

The ship, which returned briefly to port on Sunday to disembark a passenger with COVID-19, is carrying 3,587 passengers and 1,599 crew. 

The passengers and crew who have since tested positive are quarantining, according to the company’s spokesperson, Lyan Sierra-Caro.

“During routine weekly testing of our fully vaccinated crew members, there were test results that came back positive for COVID-19,” Royal Caribbean said in a statement shared bySierra-Caro late Tuesday night. “Close contacts were quickly identified, and they each immediately went into quarantine,” the statement said,

The quarantined passengers and crew are in good health and being monitored by an on-board medical team, Royal Caribbean said.

It was not immediately clear whether close contacts of the three passengers who tested positive were quarantined.

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Weekly testing of crew members is one of the protocols on Royal Caribbean’s ships, part of a “multilayered set of comprehensive health and safety measures,” the company said. Other protocols include enhanced cleaning, a vaccine requirement for passengers and crew, and the use of masks, among others.

“In an abundance of caution for the well-being of our guests and crew, adjustments have been made to Odyssey of the Seas’ schedule of shows and activities on board the Dec. 18 sailing,” Royal Caribbean said in the statement shared by Sierra-Caro.

Odyssey of the Seas is currently under yellow status, meaning the U.S. health agency, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, is investigating the situation and that the ship is under observation.

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