The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Wednesday that the no-sail order for cruise ships would be extended through to October 31.
“This order continues to suspend passenger operations on cruise ships with the capacity to carry at least 250 passengers in waters subject to US jurisdiction,” the CDC said in a statement. The previous order expired on Wednesday.
“Cumulative surveillance data reported to CDC from March 1 through September 29, shows at least 3,689 Covid-19 or Covid-like illness cases on cruise ships in US waters, in addition to at least 41 reported deaths. We recognize these numbers are likely incomplete and an underestimate."
On Tuesday, a federal health official told CNN that CDC Director Dr Robert Redfield failed to convince the White House to extend it into next year.
The CDC's statement said that recent outbreaks on cruise ships had proven that the vessels could be used to "transmit and amplify" the spread of the coronavirus, raising the chance of new infections in US communities.
“Recent passenger voyages in foreign countries continue to have outbreaks, despite cruise ship operators having extensive health and safety protocols to prevent the transmission of (coronavirus) on board," the statement said.