Cruise Industry response to Coronavirus
Published on 12 February 2020
Internationally, cruise ships departing from China have been suspended, there is no expectation of a downturn in visitation to Tasmania as a result of this. Most of the fleet that visits Tasmania is based in Australia for the season and operates around Australia, the Pacific Islands and New Zealand.
The cruise ship schedule for Tasmania is to remain relatively unchanged, however the situation is fluid internationally generally and things continue to evolve. Cruise line companies have been issued with specific advice from the Australian Department of Health on how to manage any passengers who display symptoms or require treatment. The cruise industry is one of the most well-equipped and experienced when it comes to managing and monitoring health conditions of passengers and crew.
In the same way that air travel is restricted for any person who has departed China recently, no cruise ships are accepting passengers or crew who have travelled from China or been in contact with any known cases in the last 14 days. They will also screen for symptoms at boarding.
Tasports, the border agencies and the medical authorities have deemed the virus risk of cruise visits in Tasmania to be Low.
Below is a statement provided by the global body Cruise Lines International Association (CLIA) and forwarded into Australia by the Australian Cruise Association (ACA)
CLIA - 2019-Novel Coronavirus (30 January 2020 – 5:00PM EST) The safety and health of passengers is the number one priority of CLIA members. CLIA and its member lines maintain close contact with health professionals and regulators around the world, including the World Health Organization (WHO), and are continually assessing and modifying policies and procedures as developments emerge. This includes the modification of itineraries, where needed, in light of evolving circumstances, as well as health, travel and contact screening where appropriate, for guests and crew who have recently travelled from or through the affected area consistent with prevailing guidance from global health authorities. Screening protocols allow for informed decisions on a case-by-case basis whether a guest or crew member will be denied boarding.
CLIA Members have suspended crew movements from mainland China and will deny boarding to any individual, whether guest or crew, who has travelled from or through mainland China within the previous 14 days.
Importantly, the cruise industry is one of the most well-equipped and experienced when it comes to managing and monitoring health conditions of passengers and crew. Cruise lines take precautions to conduct passive as well as active screening of passengers and crew for illness prior to boarding when circumstances demand. Furthermore, CLIA members implement outbreak prevention and response measures and their ships must be fitted with medical facilities, shipboard and shore side medical professionals available around the clock, 24/7, to provide initial medical care in the event of illness and prevent disease transmission.
You can keep up to date with any information by visiting Tourism Tasmania’s website.