The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are now allowing cruise ships to sail in U.S. waters starting Sunday. But they may not be able to have passengers on board.
The CDC;s “Framework for Conditional Sailing Order,” replaces the eight-month “no sail” order which expires this weekend. Announced earlier today, it “introduces a phased approach for the safe and responsible resumption for passenger cruises,” the CDC said in a press release
USA Today reports that Dr. Martin Cetron, director of the CDC’s Division of Global Migration and Quarantine said, “This ‘Framework of Conditional Sailing’ lays out a pathway – a phased, deliberate and intentional pathway – toward resuming passenger services but only when it is safe, when [the cruise industry] can assure health and when they are responsible with respects of needs of crew passengers and port communities.”
The first cruises to leave port will be “simulation” sailings designed to show that ships and crews are in compliance with CDC standards and able to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 onboard.