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Balamoral Hit By Norovirus Again

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Hi  It's just been announced that Balmoral has been hit by an outbreak of Norovirus on it's way the USA.  This seems to be a regular event on Fred Olsen ships although I do like cruising with them.  Is this a problem with the ship's hygiene or the passengers (it's impossible to know?).  However, the USA authorities have said that already this year 10 ships have reported outbreaks of this disease whereas in the whole of last year there was only 12 incidents which may suggest that this illness is on the increase.

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Norovirus is spread by people who do not wash their hands after going to the toilet, this includes the people who call dipping their fingers into a dribbling tap 'hand washing'. They then touch things like door handles, stair rails, serving utensils in buffets and who ever touches it after them will either get the bug and or spread it further. I was impressed how on our recent cruise on the Oriana they were fastidious about making people use the hand sanitiser before going into the restaurants and when getting back on the ship. They also put a notice up in the toilets telling you to wash your hands and use a paper towel to open the door as you left. However you would have to have staff constantly wiping every touchable serface 24/7 to combat people with poor hygiene habits. After falling victim to this bug years ago I am OCD about it and I always carry Clinel wipes wherever I go. I will go over a hotel room with them before doing anything else and wipe all around the seating area on an aeroplane along with restaurant tables and cutlery! I also will not eat cold food outside of my home. Yes I know it may sound a bit much but I never want to experience the three days of hell that Norovirus is again.

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It seems that 252 of the passengers and eight crew members have become sick since the ship left southampton. As someone pointed out on another forum, perhaps it could also have something to with the older passengers being more vulnerable to picking up infections?

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Norovirus is spread by people who do not wash their hands after going to the toilet, this includes the people who call dipping their fingers into a dribbling tap 'hand washing'. They then touch things like door handles, stair rails, serving utensils in buffets and who ever touches it after them will either get the bug and or spread it further. I was impressed how on our recent cruise on the Oriana they were fastidious about making people use the hand sanitiser before going into the restaurants and when getting back on the ship. They also put a notice up in the toilets telling you to wash your hands and use a paper towel to open the door as you left. However you would have to have staff constantly wiping every touchable serface 24/7 to combat people with poor hygiene habits. After falling victim to this bug years ago I am OCD about it and I always carry Clinel wipes wherever I go. I will go over a hotel room with them before doing anything else and wipe all around the seating area on an aeroplane along with restaurant tables and cutlery! I also will not eat cold food outside of my home. Yes I know it may sound a bit much but I never want to experience the three days of hell that Norovirus is again.

GiGI.

 

Without being rude have you ever thought about the regime of using a toilet ? What is the First thing you touch when entering a toilet ? A Door or handle then you enter a cubicle another Door then the lock then possibly the seat even to wipe it then you touch the Flush button then the reverse procedure to exit the cubicle then next you touch the soap dispenser then the Tap and maybe even the waste paper bin and again the exit door handle even with a paper towel. Oh and don't forget you WILL have touched your clothing in this procedure of just nipping to the Loo.

I think you make it sound very simplistic why does it seem to happen on certain ships time and time again?wink.png

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I did 2 world cruises on PO Aurora 8o days and 96 days, those ships were full of elderly people yet neither of those voyages had the NV explain that away, I was bed bound for 5 days with the NV as was my OH when my Grandchildren brought it home form playschool.

 

They were fine the next day not so us  I lost almost 2 stone and  it took me months to feel well again

 

,I don't wish that on anyone everyone needs to say something when these people walk away without washing their hands, or handle food, also how many people do you see filling their bottles from the machines ?  FG

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I did 2 world cruises on PO Aurora 8o days and 96 days, those ships were full of elderly people yet neither of those voyages had the NV explain that away, I was bed bound for 5 days with the NV as was my OH when my Grandchildren brought it home form playschool.

 

They were fine the next day not so us  I lost almost 2 stone and  it took me months to feel well again

 

,I don't wish that on anyone everyone needs to say something when these people walk away without washing their hands, or handle food, also how many people do you see filling their bottles from the machines ?  FG

A story very similar to mine, just last week I was laid up for 3 days due to norovirus which I got from the grandchildren.

I quarantined myself to the spare room, used the second bathroom and kept out of the way totally, I am still not fully over it, it certainly takes it's toll, gladly no one else has contracted it, YET!!!!!

HLM.

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I went on Balmorel last August and I could not fault Fred Olsen in their hygiene procedures. The problem was the other passengers on board. I sa someone using their fingers in the buffet and people not washing their hands after using the toilet. Unfortunately these are not the ones that fall ill its the other passengers that do follow procedures that end up catching everything

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When I was on Balmoral they were constantly seen cleaning.  It amazes me how many people fill the health forms out declaring they have had no illnesses and they have .

Very good point vamp23, for some reason people seem to think that by declaring an illness they will not be allowed to embark, which is very rarely the case, by declaring a cough, cold or even sickness they simply take necessary steps to lower the risk of spreading, most cases a simple check by the medical staff is sufficient, if there's anything more serious then you have to question why they turned up for the cruise in the first place.

HLM.

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My experience on all the cruise ships ios that some people just don't bother and walk into the dining room without using the hand gel and where there are children they are not encouraged by parents to use the gel. I was on Royal Caribbean a few years ago and they had goen through an outbreak on the previous cruise. The staff were constantly wahing the hand rails, the tables and even the the arms of chairs. At every opportunity there was gel, but still some people walked past. It is common sense that where a lot of people are together, that hand and general hygeine has to be of utmost importance

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Same principles apply on land too.  Really horrifies me to see people using supermarket and restaurant WCs (and I don't just mean the urinals!) head straight for the customer-service salad bars without even attempting to wash their hands.

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I went on Balmorel last August and I could not fault Fred Olsen in their hygiene procedures. The problem was the other passengers on board. I sa someone using their fingers in the buffet and people not washing their hands after using the toilet. Unfortunately these are not the ones that fall ill its the other passengers that do follow procedures that end up catching everything

I have not been on the Balmoral but have been on all FO other ships and they are fastidious over hygiene. Also there are many people who are not. We have been on P&O and RCI among many other cruise lines were there have been many people sick but if it is American (do not use sterling) It will be covered up and will not be leaked to the press. It begs to believe what the homes of some people are like and as it has been said those people do not fall sick but with their habit they could be carriers.

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