On March 9, 2020, Fred Olsen Cruise Lines via online statement announced that 2 passengers from the previous MS Braemar Caribbean cruise were diagnosed with Coronavirus after returning home. Neither of them presented any influenza-like symptoms prior to the voyage or whilst onboard and didn't visit the ship's Infirmary for medical assistance. On the current cruise (14-day Western Caribbean and Central America, itinerary February 27 - March 12), the ship reported a total of 5 people with flu-like symptoms. The patients were quarantined receiving treatments from the ship's medical team.
The Captain kept all passengers and crew fully informed of all developments and the ship activated the standard for Norovirus outbreaks procedures, including suspension of the self-service buffets and increased sanitation.
As scheduled, on March 10th, the vessel docked in call port Willemstad (Curacao) and sent the collected tests of 6 people (experiencing flu-like symptoms) ashore to be tested for Coronavirus (COVID-19). While in Port Willemstad, the vessel was denied passenger disembarkation. All pre-purchased shore excursions were fully refunded.
At 11 pm (March 10) Fred Olsen published that 5 of the 6 tests (1 passenger and 4 crew) returned positive for Coronavirus. The company also stated that the results are provisional and subject to final confirmation from a Holland-based laboratory. The ship left Curacao and continued to Barbados (Bridgetown). To all passengers and crew were provided free of charge phone calls and free WiFi Internet.
On March 11th, Fred Olsen officially cancelled the next-scheduled Braemar ship cruise (booking code M2006) - the 16-day Transatlantic crossing (March 12-28) from Bridgetown to Southampton.
The 30-day B2B (back-to-back cruise) from La Romana to Southampton (itinerary Feb 27 - Mar 28) was ended in Barbados on March 12th. However, after the ship was denied passenger debarkation in Bridgetown, it continued towards The Bahamas (vessel's flag-state) with planned docking in Nassau.
Next table shows the affected itineraries as ports and dates.
|Date / Time||Port|
|27 Feb||Departing from La Romana, Dominican Republic|
|28 Feb||Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic|
|02 Mar||Cozumel, Mexico|
|03 Mar||Belize City|
|06 Mar||Puerto Limon, Costa Rica|
|07 Mar||Colon, Panama|
|08 Mar||Cartagena, Colombia|
|10 Mar||Willemstad, Curacao Island, Dutch Antilles|
|12 Mar||Bridgetown, Barbados|
|13 Mar||Castries, St Lucia Island|
|14 Mar||Basseterre, Port Zante, St Kitts Island|
|15 Mar||St Johns, Antigua|
|16 Mar||Philipsburg, St Maarten Island, Dutch Antilles|
|23 Mar||Ponta Delgada, Sao Miguel Island, Azores|
|26 Mar||La Coruna, Spain|
|28 Mar||Arriving in Southampton, England|
For other MS Braemar accidents (including updates on the Coronavirus voyage) and incidents see at the ship's CruiseMinus page.
For Coronavirus updates on cruise ship quarantines (infected passengers and crew) and top-pandemic countries (COVID-19 cases and deaths, daily updated statistics) see at CruiseMapper's Norovirus page.