Fear Of Deadly Cholera Outbreak Left Thousands Stuck On Cruise Ship. Liner Now Allowed To Dock

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Kay Smythe News and Commentary Writer
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Thousands of passengers were stranded on the Norwegian Dawn cruise ship Sunday amid a suspected outbreak of cholera.

The Norwegian cruise liner was set to dock Sunday at the Mauritius capital of Port Louis but was denied permission after at least 15 people fell ill and were placed in isolation over a suspected cholera outbreak, according to BBC. Authorities in Mauritius initially blocked the ship in order to take samples from passengers who developed symptoms of a mild stomach illness, forcing all 2,184 passengers and 1,026 crew members to remain aboard.

In an update shared shortly after the original news broke of the suspected infection, the director of the Mauritius Ministry of Health confirmed the passengers had gastroenteritis, not cholera, BBC reported. The cruise ship was then given the green light to dock.

South Africa and the neighboring nation of Zambia are both experiencing a cholera outbreak at the time of writing, but apparently those aboard the ship are taking the situation in their stride, a passenger told the BBC.

Cholera is an acute diarrheal disease that can kill patients within hours if left untreated, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Some 1.3 million to 4 million cases are estimated to occur on an annual basis as the disease spreads easily through contaminated water and foods. (RELATED: ‘Everybody’s Freaking Out’: Passengers Desperately Attempt To Steady Sinking Ferry, One Dead: Video)

Since Jan. 2023, an estimated 188,000 people have been infected with cholera across southern African states, with more than 3,000 deaths, BBC reported. Cholera pandemics have killed millions of people around the world throughout history, with the most recent having started in South Asia in 1961.

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings did not immediately respond to the Daily Caller’s request for comment.