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Court allows cruise ships to resume operations in Florida


Despite the ruling, the federal government reiterates that the rules are necessary because the pandemic unleashed several deadly outbreaks on cruise ships. It is only valid for those who leave or arrive at the ports of Florida.

An appeals court in Atlanta, Georgia, ruled Friday in favor of a lawsuit brought by Ron DeSantis, the governor of Florida,

against travel restrictions imposed on cruise ships by federal authorities

in the United States due to the COVID-19 pandemic. .

The decision was seen as a victory for state authorities who argue that restrictions imposed by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)

made it difficult for that tourism industry to resume its activities,

after being closed for almost 16 months.

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[Cruise companies and Florida governor clash over vaccination passports]

The ruling only applies to ships leaving or arriving in Florida ports and happens as new cases of coronavirus and hospitalizations in Florida have skyrocketed.

More than 73,000 COVID-19 cases and 78 deaths were reported during the last week, three times the incidence of the virus than two weeks ago, while the rate of positive cases rose to more than 15%.

Under federal rules, ships could only receive passengers if cruise lines met certain requirements such as establishing testing laboratories to detect COVID-19, conducting test trips,

maintaining social distancing, and establishing homes on land to quarantine them. passengers.

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But those guidelines only allowed a fraction of the normal number of boats to sail, the state of Florida said.

In April, Governor DeSantis and the state attorney general, Ashley Moody, filed a lawsuit against the government, claiming that the CDC's navigation requirements "exceeded" the authority of that federal agency.

"The CDC's orders are manifestly beyond its authority

," Florida said.

According to state authorities, the federal law that gives the CDC the power to enact traditional quarantine measures "does not allow the agency to reformulate the entire cruise industry."

[Two passengers test positive for COVID-19 on an MSC cruise]

However, the federal government maintains that the rules are necessary because the United States is going through a pandemic that included several deadly outbreaks on cruise ships.

"Those experiences showed that cruise ships are especially prone to spreading COVID-19, probably

due to the proximity of passengers and crew for prolonged periods

," federal officials maintain, as reported by

NBC News

, sister network of Noticias Telemundo.

For its part, the Department of Justice has said that this is not the time to suspend the rules because the government is working with the industry to resume its activities and stressed that

the shipping companies did not join the lawsuit

filed by the Florida authorities.

The CDC first stopped cruise ship navigation in March 2020 in response to the coronavirus pandemic, which had affected passengers and crews on numerous ships.

With information from EFE and NBC News

Source: telemundo

All news articles on 2021-07-24

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