Suspected Norovirus Outbreak On-board Balmoral Cruise Ship

Over 25 Percent Of Passengers Fall Ill


Oliver Wicks, Press Officer | 0114 274 4649

Expert travel lawyers at law firm Irwin Mitchell are ‘deeply concerned’ by reports of a suspected norovirus outbreak on-board the Balmoral cruise ship.

The US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) have confirmed that 252 of the 919 passengers on board the vessel have fallen ill, with a large majority of the holidaymakers being British.

While docked in Portland, America, health officials boarded the ship to carry out tests on people who had fallen ill.
It has since been reported that the number of patients suffering with norovirus has risen, with crew members also contracting the illness. Symptoms can include a sudden onset of vomiting and diarrhoea and a temperature, headache and stomach cramps.

Irwin Mitchell is already representing over a dozen passengers, many of whom, suffered from illness following cruises between May 2015 and July 2015.

Irwin Mitchell has additionally been asked for help by two passengers who travelled on board the Balmoral Cruise Ship in April 2016, who suffered with symptoms of gastric illness.

It is reported that in 2010, over 310 people on board the ship were claimed to be suffering diarrhoea and vomiting when the ship docked in Los Angeles. Further, in 2009 it is reported that an outbreak of norovirus hit more than 100 people on board the ship when it was travelling on a cruise around Scotland.

When the illness was first reported the ship's owners, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines, confirmed that staff were "undertaking extensive sanitisation measures and cleaning of the ship".

Jennifer Mullins, an expert in Irwin Mitchell’s International Personal Injury team, represents victims of illness outbreaks in the UK and abroad.

Expert Opinion
“It’s deeply concerning to see reports of this illness outbreak on-board the Balmoral cruise ship.

“Norovirus is contagious and can leave victims suffering with significant symptoms which can have a huge impact on their day-to-day lives. The last thing passengers should be considering when booking a cruise is whether they could fall ill.

“Through our work representing those who have suffered illnesses following stays on board cruise ships, we understand just how serious the consequences of such illness outbreaks can be.

"We hope that reassurances are provided by Fred Olsen Cruise Lines and that any measures required to try to prevent incidents like this in the future will be implemented immediately.”
Jennifer Mullins, Solicitor

If you’ve suffered a gastric illness on board or following a cruise, you may be able to claim compensation. For more information, please visit our Cruise Illness Claims page.