Irwin Mitchell now representing over 50 passengers
A Winsford woman who boarded a cruise liner just days after it was at the centre of a sickness bug which left dozens of passengers ill says she too was struck down by sickness and left on a drip because she was suffering from dehydration.
Hilary Brown says she fell ill on the Marco Polo less than a week after the luxury vessel’s previous voyage was aborted in the Cromarty Firth after reports of large numbers of passengers and crew suffering from symptoms of vomiting and diarrhoea.
Travel law experts at Irwin Mitchell have expressed concern over the latest case, which comes on top of over 50 other passengers who are now being represented by the firm after being struck down with sickness on four cruises on the Marco Polo, including the voyage which ended prematurely in Scotland.
Mrs Brown says she was assured the vessel was safe to travel on before she boarded the liner, operated by Transocean Tours, for a 12-day trip around the British Isles with her husband just days after the outbreak on the ship hit the headlines in mid July.
But her sea break was ruined when she was hit with a severe stomach bug and needed injections and an intravenous drip as she continued to be poorly.
She said: “‘I was worried about the reports of illness that I had seen on the news so I took the precaution of calling the people I had booked with.”
“I was told that everything was fine and that the Marco Polo would be the ‘cleanest ship around’. I also checked with one of the members of crew as I boarded the vessel and was again told that everything was fine.
“But then I began to suffer from symptoms of diarrhoea, stomach pain and vomiting and was given tablets to treat the diarrhoea. I also had to have injections and was placed on a drip. I had no energy and this really spoilt my enjoyment of the holiday.”
Clive Garner, head of the renowned Travel Litigation Team at Irwin Mitchell, is now representing Mrs Brown and 50 other passengers who travelled on board the Marco Polo on cruises dating back to the beginning of June.
He said: ‘It’s very worrying indeed that there are reports of more passengers becoming ill despite reassurances made to the passengers that everything was fine, and we continue to hear from passengers who have fallen ill on this boat, not just on one cruise but on a number of journeys.
“The Cruise operator has a duty to its passengers to ensure that reports of illness are recognised and action is taken to prevent further passengers becoming ill.
“I am concerned to note that there have been concerns raised over the hygiene practices on board this vessel in the past and would expect any responsible cruise operator to take such concerns seriously and to act on these in order to protect holidaymakers like Mrs Brown.’
He said legal action would be taken against the Cruise Operators on behalf of the group, who all travelled on the Marco Polo on four cruises dating back to June 10 2009.