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Cruise Ship with 42 Sick Aboard Headed to Florida

In Florida, local officials are trying to decide whether to allow a cruise ship to dock that has dozens of passengers and crew aboard possibly infected with the coronavirus. The Holland America ship, Zaandam, left Valparaiso, Chile over the weekend and is headed to Ft. Lauderdale where it expects to arrive March 30.

In updates posted on social media, Holland America says 13 guests and 29 crewmembers have flu-like symptoms. They haven't been tested for COVID-19 because the ship doesn't have any tests aboard. Holland America is sending another ship to rendezvous with the Zaandam and deliver test kits, along with additional supplies and staff.

All 1,200 passengers have been asked to remain in their staterooms, where meals are being delivered. At an emergency meeting Tuesday, some members of Broward County's Commission said they believed the ship should be turned away and not allowed to dock. The commission deferred action, saying it would look for guidance to the Centers for Disease Control and Protection.

Copyright 2020 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

As NPR's Miami correspondent, Greg Allen reports on the diverse issues and developments tied to the Southeast. He covers everything from breaking news to economic and political stories to arts and environmental stories. He moved into this role in 2006, after four years as NPR's Midwest correspondent.