BRASILIA (Reuters) – Five cruise ships in Brazilian waters have reported 214 cases of COVID-19 among their crew and passengers, including two ships that are in quarantine in the port of Santos, health regulator Anvisa said on Tuesday.
Two ships run by the Swiss-Italian cruise line MSC Cruises, each with more than 3,000 passengers are due to arrive in Rio de Janeiro and Santos this week, the regulator said.
The MSC Seaside arriving on Thursday in Santos has reported 65 cases among crew members and 25 among passengers, while the MSC Preziosa due in Rio on Wednesday has 25 crew with COVID-19 and 8 passengers infected, Anvisa said.
Cruise ship companies suspended operations in Brazil until Jan. 21 after health authorities recommended against cruise ship travel following several offshore outbreaks of the coronavirus.
Industry association CLIA said no ships will cast off during the “voluntary” suspension period, while those at sea will complete their voyages.
The MSC Splendida and the Costa Diadema, owned by Carnival Corp, are quarantined at anchor in Santos and have 62 and 30 crew members infected, respectively, with no passengers on board.
The Costa Fascinosa, also owned by Carnival, is at port in Rio with 7 cases of COVID-19, five of them passengers, Anvisa said.
(Reporting by Anthony Boadle; editing by Grant McCool)