SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – Thousands of passengers who have disembarked cruise ships over the last few months have been forced to quarantine for 14 days.

But according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the virus stayed in passenger cabins for longer.

A report released by the CDC says the coronavirus was found on surfaces of the Diamond Princess cruise ship 17 days after passengers disembarked.

The CDC states that the cabins had not yet been disinfected.

“SARS-CoV-2 RNA was identified on a variety of surfaces in cabins of both symptomatic and asymptomatic infected passengers up to 17 days after cabins were vacated on the Diamond Princess but before disinfection procedures had been conducted (Takuya Yamagishi, National Institute of Infectious Diseases, personal communication, 2020).”


The CDC’s report outlined multiple cruises, including the Grand Princess which docked in the Port of Oakland earlier this month.

Between outbreaks on three cruise ship voyages, the CDC determined that more than 800 cases of COVID-19 were confirmed.

“Transmission occurred across multiple voyages from ship to ship by crew members; both crew members and passengers were affected; 10 deaths associated with cruise ships have been reported to date.”

The Diamond Princess cruise had departed from Japan on January 20 with about 3,700 passengers and crew members aboard. Five days later, a passenger was evaluated and confirmed positive for SARS-CoV-2 after experiencing symptoms.

The passenger disembarked in Hong Kong.

The ship made six stops in three other countries before returning to Japan on February 3. The ship was then quarantined.

During the initial stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Diamond Princess was the setting of the largest outbreak outside mainland China.

The CDC says among the 3,711 passengers and crew, 712 tested positive for the virus. 107 of those passengers were U.S. residents. As of March 13, 11 of those passengers remain hospitalized in Japan and seven are in serious condition.


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