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Published On: Thu, Nov 8th, 2012

Cruise ship, Constellation, norovirus outbreak sickens at least 350

A Celebrity Cruises’ cruise ship has been delayed in Southhampton after 350 passengers came down with what is suspected to be norovirus, according to a BBC report.

Image/Pjotr Mahhonin via Wikimedia Commons

The 2,200 passenger, 900 crew Celebrity Constellation arrived in Southampton on Tuesday at the end of a 12-night cruise around France and Spain.

Southampton’s Port Health Authority said the passengers had fallen ill with symptoms of diarrhea and vomiting.

A spokesperson for the Port Authority confirmed it was informed of “concerns over increased levels of what appeared to be norovirus” several days before Constellation’s arrival.

Departure of the Constellation was delayed for several hours for cleaning and sanitizing. A representative of the health authority has since been onboard and verified the affected cabins, and a spokesperson confirmed that public areas onboard as well 200 cabins had been deep cleaned.

One ship passenger said,  “The sanitation on that ship is bad.”

Noroviruses are a group of viruses that cause the “stomach flu,” or gastroenteritis in people.

The symptoms include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and some stomach cramping. Sometimes people additionally have a low-grade fever, chills, headache, muscle aches, and a general sense of tiredness. The illness often begins suddenly, and the infected person may feel very sick. In most people, the illness is self-limiting with symptoms lasting for about 1 or 2 days. In general, children experience more vomiting than adults do.

Norovirus is spread person to person particularly in crowded, closed places. Norovirus is typically spread through contaminated food and water, touching surfaces or objects contaminated with norovirus and then putting your hand or fingers in your mouth and close contact with someone who is vomiting or has diarrhea.

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About the Author

- Writer, Co-Founder and Executive Editor of The Global Dispatch. Robert has been covering news in the areas of health, world news and politics for a variety of online news sources. He is also the Editor-in-Chief of the website, Outbreak News Today and hosts the podcast, Outbreak News Interviews on iTunes, Stitcher and Spotify Robert is politically Independent and a born again Christian Follow @bactiman63

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