United States Senator Rick Scott is calling for protective measures for Floridians ahead of the Holland America’s Zaandam and Rotterdam expected arrival at Port Everglades.
The cruise ship, which is carrying more than 1,000 passengers and crew. Four people aboard the Zaandam have died and at least two had tested positive for COVD-19. The ships were hoping to dock in Port Everglades.
“This situation is absolutely horrific, and your heart goes out to all of those on board.
We need to make sure everyone on this ship is cared for without spreading the virus further, and that we are doing everything we can to protect Floridians. If this ship docks in Florida, the federal government must coordinate with the state to make sure that every single passenger on board gets tested for Coronavirus.
The ship must be held in port while everyone is tested, and all passengers must be quarantined for 14 days, even if they are not currently showing symptoms.
The federal government and the state must also coordinate to determine which hospitals will be designated for those that require immediate attention. We have to ensure the sick are getting properly treated, but we can’t take any chances,” Senator Rick Scott said.
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has indicated passengers on both cruise ships cannot be dumped in his state.
“First of all, I’m not supportive of that,” DeSantis said. “We’ve talked to the Coast Guard, the Coast Guard, I don’t think wants them to come in. We’ve talked to the White House about it, and we don’t want it to come in.”
The Zaandam cruise was originally scheduled to end in Fort Lauderdale on April 7. It departed from Buenos Aires on March 7, on 12th March she called the Falklands Islands and called at Punta Arenas, extreme south of Chile, but was later banned from docking at Chilean ports.
According to the latest reports, currently 73 passengers and 116 crew on Zaandam have reported influenza-like symptoms. There are 797 passengers and 645 crew on Rotterdam. Zaandam is now carrying 446 passengers and 602 crew. HAL hopes the ships can disembark at Port Everglades but approval has not been given yet.