Cunard Line’s Queen Elizabeth cruise ship has crew members on board who have tested positive for COVID-19, the cruise line confirmed on Wednesday. The cruise line did not specify the exact number of crews who tested positive.
“We have detected a small number of Covid-19 cases among crew members joining Queen Elizabeth,” Cunard Chairman Simon Palethorpe told USA TODAY in a statement.
There are no passengers on board and the ship is not to sail with passengers until July 19.
The subsidiary of Carnival Corp. is working with Southampton Port Health and has taken steps to “successfully contain the situation” including limiting new crew on board the ship, putting in place approved isolation measures and contact tracing.
“We have comprehensive health and wellness procedures in place to protect everyone on board, which have been developed with the guidance of our global experts in medicine, public health and industry and in close coordination with ministries, ”Palethorpe said.
Cunard did not share medical details of the crew on board, including whether the crew had been vaccinated. the BBC said the ship currently has around 800 crew on board. According to Cunard’s website, the Queen Elizabeth has the capacity to hold just over 2,000 passengers and just over 1,000 crew members.
According to government directives, only domestic cruises are currently allowed in the UK during its third leg on the way to resuming cruising after it was closed by the COVID-19 pandemic last year. By July 19, the UK is expected to reach its fourth milestone, lifting social distancing and capacity restrictions. Currently, only up to 1,000 passengers or 50% of passenger capacity are permitted on domestic cruises – a limit inapplicable to crew.