Italian cruise ship blocked from Tortola berths in St Maarten
Photo via Port St Maarten
An Italian cruise line, the Costa Favolosa, which was denied entry to call on Tortola in the British Virgin Islands (BVI) amid coronavirus fears, was allowed to berth in St Maarten.
BVI denied the cruise ship entry after it was reported that a number of persons had flown in from Italy and joined the ship in Guadeloupe within the last six days.
The Costa Favolosa will depart St Maarten on February 27 and sail to Fort de France as per scheduled itinerary.
In a statement, the company Costa Crociere, gave reassurances that there are neither suspected cases of guests nor crew members with symptoms related to Covid-19 onboard Costa Favolosa.
As of February 22, given the outbreak of the virus in a number of different Italian towns, the company says it decided to deny boarding to any customers originating from one of the quarantined municipalities.
In terms of health on board the Costa Favolosa, it says the ship’s medical staff is monitoring the health of guests and crewmembers, giving the utmost attention to the application of all precautionary measures.
Costa Crociere says since the outbreak of the global health emergency the company decided to further strengthen the precautionary measures applied to all its fleet in order to guarantee the safety of guests and crew.
It states all embarking guests, visitors or crew are given a specific screening medical questionnaire to fill in before the cruise experience commences.
Anyone boarding their ships is screened and anybody with a body temperature above 37.8 degrees Celsius is denied access to the ship.
There are also strict sanitisation protocols and the use of disinfectants onboard its ships effective against Covid-19.
It adds that guests, visitors and crew members of any nationality who have travelled from, to or through mainland China, Hong Kong, and Macau in the 14 days prior to boarding are not allowed to board Costa ships.