Investigation Update on the Mercury

Cruise Line: Celebrity Cruises

Cruise Ship: Mercury

Voyage Dates: 03/08 – 03/19

Number of passengers who have reported being ill during the voyage out of total number of passengers: 406 of 1829 (22.1%)

Number of crew who have reported being ill during the voyage out of total number of crew: 13 of 857 (1.5%)

Predominant symptoms: diarrhea and vomiting

Causative agent: Norovirus

Actions: In response to the outbreak, Celebrity Cruises and the crew aboard the ship have taken the following actions:

  • Increased cleaning and disinfection procedures according to their outbreak prevention and response plan,
  • Made onboard announcements to both notify passengers and encourage case reporting
  • Notified oncoming passengers thru communication with their travel agents
  • Submitted to VSP their outbreak response and port cleaning and disinfection plans
  • Changed the ship’s schedule to arrive in Charleston on 18 March and starting new voyage 21 March
  • Have an additional 50 crew meeting the ship to assist with disinfection response efforts in Charleston as well as contract workers
  • Collected 10 stool specimens samples for submission to CDC’s lab for analysis
  • Making twice daily reports of gastrointestinal illness cases to the VSP

Two CDC public health staff will meet the ship on arrival in Charleston, SC to evaluate the outbreak and response activities throughout the ships time in port.

Page last reviewed: March 17, 2010 (archived document)