Two cruise lines won’t be allowed to disembark in Hawaii after being blocked by other ports, state officials said.
Holland American Line’s Maasdam and Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Jewel will be allowed to refuel and take on supplies but no passengers will be allowed to disembark, the Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) said.
Hawaii is focusing its resources on containing the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus, HDOT Director Jade Butay said in a statement.
“Allowing more than 2,500 passengers and crew to disembark will further strain these resources,” Butay said.
Neither ship was originally planning to dock in Hawaii but shifted plans after multiple ports blocked them from docking. The ships will now refuel and restock before continuing on to destinations in mainland America, according to the director.
Cruise lines announced a voluntary and temporary suspension of operations from U.S. ports of call on March 13 for 30 days but the Maasdam and Norwegian Jewel were already out on sea at that time, along with approximately 38 other ships, according to Cruise Lines International Association.
HDOT cited state efforts to slow the spread of the new virus, which The Epoch Times refers to as the CCP virus because the Chinese Communist Party’s coverup and mismanagement allowed the virus to spread throughout China and create a global pandemic.
“On Tuesday, the Governor announced the State’s 15 Days to Slow the Spread effort,” Hawaii’s Department of Transportation (HDOT) said in a statement. “As part of this announcement, he directed visitors to consider postponing their travel to Hawaii for at least 30 days. Pursuant to the Governor’s announcement, HDOT made the decision to deny the two requests to allow passengers and crew to disembark.”
The Norwegian Jewel was previously turned away by Fiji and New Zealand. American Samoa allowed the ship to refuel but wouldn’t let any passengers disembark. Other cruise ships are in similar situations.
“Norwegian Jewel’s 23-day Australia and French Polynesia itinerary was modified to disembark in Auckland, New Zealand on March 20, 2020. Due to multiple port closures in the area, further modifications were made. We will share an update as it becomes available,” a Norwegian spokesperson told The Epoch Times via email.
There are no confirmed cases onboard any Norwegian vessels, the spokesman added.
Holland American Line’s media relations phone number went to a message that said its office is closed.