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Lawyer calls for greater hygiene measures aboard QE2 as it suffers its latest outbreak of illness

QE2 illness outbreak


Travel litigation specialist Suki Chhokar of Irwin Mitchell Solicitors has expressed concern that the third outbreak of illness aboard the QE2 in the last four years has been reported and wonders whether lessons are being learned.

Three days into a round the world cruise, a number of people on the QE2 cruise ship have been affected by an illness, believed to be Norovirus. Norovirus is a very contagious bug which spreads quickly in confined spaces. It normally causes vomiting and diarrhoea, however it can frequently cause more serious and long term symptoms.

Solicitor calls for "stricter hygiene measures" following Norovirus outbreak

Mr Chhokar said "The fact that this passenger cruise ship has had at least three outbreaks of illness in the last four years would suggest that lessons are not being learnt. Each outbreak brings great misery for people who have spent a large amount of money on what they hoped would be a dream holiday. Stricter hygiene measures should be invoked to prevent this happening again.

"Last year we saw numerous outbreaks of illness on board cruise ships. We said on each occasion that it was not good enough to say that just because people are in confined areas they are susceptible to contracting illness.

"Increased risks of illness must be met with stricter hygiene measures to prevent the spread of infection. Basic food and water hygiene levels must be in place and regular cleaning of key areas such as the toilets and kitchens is essential."

In 2004 two instances of illness outbreaks on board the QE2 resulted in over 100 passengers falling ill.

In 2003 the QE2 was held in port when it failed to meet the required sanitation score, having found to have 383 sanitation violations.

QE2 compensation claims possible for illness suffered

Irwin Mitchell has acted in a number of group action illness claims arising from Norovirus and other illness outbreaks on board ships, including the MS Sundream, MS Topaz, MS Ausonia, SS Odysseus, the Van Gogh and others.

Cruise illness and compensation claim advice

The following precautions are advised for passengers going on a cruise:

  • Pay attention to the food preparation, hygiene and sanitation standards onboard the boat
  • Make sure you wash your hands thoroughly at regular intervals
  • If you suffer illness seek appropriate medical attention both aboard and when you return home
  • Make the cruise staff aware of any complaint immediately
  • Record all aspects of your complaint
  • Exchange contact details with other affected holidaymakers
  • Take photographic and video evidence
  • Do not accept compensation payments on the spot
  • Do not sign any document which waives your rights


If you, or someone you know has suffered illness and wish to seek compensation, our specialists can help. Fill in our online claims form for free advice.