Cunard Cancels Queen Elizabeth Cruises after an unspecified number of boarding crew members tested positive for the novel coronavirus. The Carnival Corp. subsidiary’s return is now set for the 13th of August, Simon Palethorpe, Cunard President has said in a statement. Five sailings on the Queen Elizabeth ship were canceled.
In March 2020, Palethorpe had said that the priority of the cruise line was to work along with public health scientific and medical experts and the government to set in place all the approved protocols in order to protect the health of the crew and passengers as well as the communities Cunard visits.
Cunard Cancels Queen Elizabeth Cruises, “We are not able to complete the final essential preparations or deliver the comprehensive training schedule to the full required contingent of the crew prior to the first scheduled sailing,” Palethorpe said.
The cruise line had suspended all its sailings since March 2020, just like the rest of the cruise lines, when the coronavirus spread and resulted in a pandemic. Cruise lines have been working closely with health authorities and the government to develop and enforce covid-19 appropriate protocols and behavior to protect the staff, guests, and the communities along the itinerary.
“These protocols, of which we are very proud, have proven to be very effective and we had no cases of COVID-19 in over 5,000 crew members until last month when a small number of cases were identified amongst new crew boarding the ship,” Palethorpe said in a statement released this week.
About 800 crew members are currently on board, though it is unclear as to how many of them have tested positive for Covid-19. In spite of the delay, Queen Elizabeth is still on schedule to be Cunard’s first ship to return to service. Currently, Queen Mary 2 is slated to relaunch service from the 14th of November, while Queen Victoria will remain out of service until late April 2022.