If you’re wondering to yourself, “Are cruise ships safe?”, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may have an answer for you. Each year, the organization conducts unannounced sanitation inspections of cruise ships, and this year, it gave a perfect score of 100 to 32 ships.
Holland America and Carnival were the two cruise lines that achieved the most 100s, getting seven and six, respectively. Holland America’s Zuiderdam ship was the seventh and final one to receive the score, while for many of its other ships, the occasion marked another consecutive year of perfect scores. Eurodam has received its ninth 100 in a row now, while Statendam achieved 100 for the third consecutive year.
“Our standards are high and the shipboard teams keep on delivering super results, which is a true testament to the hard work and dedication of everyone involved,” Orlando Ashford, president of Holland America, said in a statment.
It wasn’t just these two cruise lines that stole the show, however. A number of others were represented too, such as Royal Caribbean International and Celebrity Cruises, with four perfect scores each. This is also not taking into account the number of ships that received scores of over 90.
The CDC’s Vessel Sanitation Program has been running for many years now, aiming to assist the cruise industry with preventing and controlling the spread of gastrointestinal illnesses on cruise ships. As well as inspecting ships, it provides training to staff, furnishes the industry and the public with health information, and keeps track of gastrointestinal illnesses. It covers ships with 13 or more passengers that have a foreign itinerary with a U.S. port.
The results of the CDC’s periodic inspections are all publicly available online. It might be a good idea to check a score before you sign on to any particular cruise, and avoid the chances of having to use your travel health insurance later on.