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CDC Requests Input on Resumption of cruises and the public can participate

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I just submitted my comment. I referenced the success of MSC protocols for European cruises and recommended that CDC work with cruise lines to quickly implement effective protocols to restart the cruise industry. Interesting to read some of the other comments. 

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2 minutes ago, Milwaukee Eight said:

Not much different than most other special interest groups.  They’re going to take advantage of any opportunity they can to voice their opinions.  Kind of like people who just want to get cruising again providing feedback that doesn’t really address the public health concerns that supposedly prompted the No Sail Order.

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1 hour ago, sandebeach said:

I just submitted my comment. I referenced the success of MSC protocols for European cruises and recommended that CDC work with cruise lines to quickly implement effective protocols to restart the cruise industry. Interesting to read some of the other comments. 

The big difference is the EU's allowing of the cruise lines to utilize shore based hospitals and quarantine facilities by "agreement" with the local ports, while the CDC does not want the local, state, or federal health system impacted or used for cruise ship cases or quarantines.  I believe that the difference in health care structure between the US and Europe is the reason.

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The CDC asking the general public these questions was just a huge SCREW YOU to the entire cruise industry.  The CDC asking our advice on question that the TOP epidemiologists would have difficulty answering, simply is contemptible.

 

The CDC has gone from a leader in protecting our health and viewed as the gold standard throughout the world, to a laughable corrupt, fringe  govt. organization over the past six months.  
 

 

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49 minutes ago, joelheather said:

The CDC asking the general public these questions was just a huge SCREW YOU to the entire cruise industry.  The CDC asking our advice on question that the TOP epidemiologists would have difficulty answering, simply is contemptible.

 

The CDC has gone from a leader in protecting our health and viewed as the gold standard throughout the world, to a laughable corrupt, fringe  govt. organization over the past six months.  
 

 

All government agencies are required to have a "request for information" before they change any rules or regulations.  Anyone is entitled to respond to any of these "requests" from any agency, what weight they give the response is based on the responder's qualifications.  Love the "CDC hates the cruise lines" conspiracy theories.  If that were the case, they would have scrapped the VSP years ago, and resorted to the mandated sanitary inspection and health interviews every time a cruise ship entered a US port from foreign.  That would have killed the cruise industry years ago.

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1 hour ago, chengkp75 said:

All government agencies are required to have a "request for information" before they change any rules or regulations.  Anyone is entitled to respond to any of these "requests" from any agency, what weight they give the response is based on the responder's qualifications.  Love the "CDC hates the cruise lines" conspiracy theories.  If that were the case, they would have scrapped the VSP years ago, and resorted to the mandated sanitary inspection and health interviews every time a cruise ship entered a US port from foreign.  That would have killed the cruise industry years ago.

Yes, but the reality is they are looking for responses from those that know what they are talking about.  I worked in Fed Gov for 25 years.  The last 4 years or so I was in acquisition. RFI's are put out for input for new contracts.  Believe me, they are not looking for the general public's opinions.  The problem with this is it was put out, including on the news that the CDC was looking for comments from the public.  In reality, they don't care what the average cruiser has to say as they aren't experts.  Even on CC, so many saw the "public" input part and don't know what it really means.  Those questions are not something an average cruiser can even begin to answer.  That's where the problem comes in.  

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1 hour ago, chengkp75 said:

All government agencies are required to have a "request for information" before they change any rules or regulations.  Anyone is entitled to respond to any of these "requests" from any agency, what weight they give the response is based on the responder's qualifications.  Love the "CDC hates the cruise lines" conspiracy theories.  If that were the case, they would have scrapped the VSP years ago, and resorted to the mandated sanitary inspection and health interviews every time a cruise ship entered a US port from foreign.  That would have killed the cruise industry years ago.

It is FACT the news media & the CDC hate the cruise industry.  I do not, nor have I ever believed in any conspiracy theory.  The simple fact the CDC  going back to the mid 90’s has maintained a separate set of rules for cruise ships.  
 

When SOLAS was founded in Europe in 1929, they had to evolve of the years.  The CDC wanted to completely override all SOLAS protocols in the 90’s when ships left from or returned to an American port. 
 

While other similar maritime laws were ratified all over the world it was the CDC in 1996 that took issue.  The CDC has always taken issue with cruise lines simply because of the foreign ship registries  and not having full control over the health safety standards of most vessels, they found a legal loophole to become more involved and set forth extremely stringent protocols that cost the lines tens of millions to adopt. 
 

And the media has hated cruise lines ever since the 1985 high jacking of the  Achille Lauro.  They had problems getting the full story from the cruise line of the event.  That started a pissing contest with the cruise lines and the media trying to get information from them. I am sure you have already researched this already, so I’m a little embarrassed by telling you all this.

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Please advise me where the CDC has any jurisdiction over SOLAS regulations, or where CDC regulations intersect with SOLAS.  Having worked in the industry for over 40 years, and several in the cruise industry, I don't know of any intersect.

 

Please also advise me of what CDC wanted to "override" SOLAS "protocols" in the 90's?

 

The US ratified the SOLAS convention in 1914, 1929, 1948, and once the IMO became an entity, in 1974, which required that all language in the convention be enacted as law in all signatory nations, and the US has ratified all subsequent revisions of SOLAS.

Please advise what the CDC did in 1996 that "took issue" with SOLAS?

 

The CDC does not operate through a "loophole" for foreign flag ships.  As part of the Department of HHS, the US Public Health Service (USPH) contains eight divisions of HHS, which includes the CDC.  The USPH has, since 1798, has had the mission of preventing the introduction of infectious disease into the US by ships.  They have the mandate to inspect all ships, domestic or foreign, cargo or passenger, that arrive in the US from overseas, to determine the health of crew and passengers in order to issue "pratique" or a clean bill of health to allow the ship to dock and conduct commerce within the US.  In the 70's, the CDC started a program, the VSP (Vessel Sanitation Program) that was a co-operative agreement with the cruise industry, that, if followed by the cruise ships, would eliminate the mandatory inspection every time the ship re-entered the US, and substituted random inspections.  So, in this sense, there are special rules for cruise ships, ones that benefit the cruise lines.

 

In fact, the CDC and USPH, has always had complete control over the health standards of all foreign flag ships, not just cruise ships.  Once the ship applies to enter US waters, just like any other country, they need to meet the sanitation requirements of that country.  The CDC and USPH do not have a mandate to protect the health of passengers on foreign ships, no more than the USCG has a mandate to enforce their regulations on foreign flag ships, only those of SOLAS, but the consensus is that if the ship follows the VSP at all times, then the passengers and crew will have less opportunity for bringing an infectious disease back into the US.

 

The VSP is still a co-operative venture between the CDC and the cruise lines, both working to reach agreement between what is best epidemiological practices, and what is attainable by the cruise lines.  The cruise lines would far more prefer to operate under the VSP than to have a full sanitation inspection and health interviews with a percentage of crew and passengers each week before the passengers can disembark.

 

I have not only researched this, but have worked and lived this environment for years, so you're not "telling me anything", unless you can show the interaction between SOLAS and CDC.

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1 hour ago, chengkp75 said:

Please advise me where the CDC has any jurisdiction over SOLAS regulations, or where CDC regulations intersect with SOLAS.  Having worked in the industry for over 40 years, and several in the cruise industry, I don't know of any intersect.

 

Please also advise me of what CDC wanted to "override" SOLAS "protocols" in the 90's?

 

The US ratified the SOLAS convention in 1914, 1929, 1948, and once the IMO became an entity, in 1974, which required that all language in the convention be enacted as law in all signatory nations, and the US has ratified all subsequent revisions of SOLAS.

Please advise what the CDC did in 1996 that "took issue" with SOLAS?

 

The CDC does not operate through a "loophole" for foreign flag ships.  As part of the Department of HHS, the US Public Health Service (USPH) contains eight divisions of HHS, which includes the CDC.  The USPH has, since 1798, has had the mission of preventing the introduction of infectious disease into the US by ships.  They have the mandate to inspect all ships, domestic or foreign, cargo or passenger, that arrive in the US from overseas, to determine the health of crew and passengers in order to issue "pratique" or a clean bill of health to allow the ship to dock and conduct commerce within the US.  In the 70's, the CDC started a program, the VSP (Vessel Sanitation Program) that was a co-operative agreement with the cruise industry, that, if followed by the cruise ships, would eliminate the mandatory inspection every time the ship re-entered the US, and substituted random inspections.  So, in this sense, there are special rules for cruise ships, ones that benefit the cruise lines.

 

In fact, the CDC and USPH, has always had complete control over the health standards of all foreign flag ships, not just cruise ships.  Once the ship applies to enter US waters, just like any other country, they need to meet the sanitation requirements of that country.  The CDC and USPH do not have a mandate to protect the health of passengers on foreign ships, no more than the USCG has a mandate to enforce their regulations on foreign flag ships, only those of SOLAS, but the consensus is that if the ship follows the VSP at all times, then the passengers and crew will have less opportunity for bringing an infectious disease back into the US.

 

The VSP is still a co-operative venture between the CDC and the cruise lines, both working to reach agreement between what is best epidemiological practices, and what is attainable by the cruise lines.  The cruise lines would far more prefer to operate under the VSP than to have a full sanitation inspection and health interviews with a percentage of crew and passengers each week before the passengers can disembark.

 

I have not only researched this, but have worked and lived this environment for years, so you're not "telling me anything", unless you can show the interaction between SOLAS and CDC.

Yeah, what he said!!

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9 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

The big difference is the EU's allowing of the cruise lines to utilize shore based hospitals and quarantine facilities by "agreement" with the local ports, while the CDC does not want the local, state, or federal health system impacted or used for cruise ship cases or quarantines.  I believe that the difference in health care structure between the US and Europe is the reason.

I’ve been saying the same thing. You just say it much better than I do. 😇

 

M8

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20 hours ago, joelheather said:

The CDC asking the general public these questions was just a huge SCREW YOU to the entire cruise industry.  The CDC asking our advice on question that the TOP epidemiologists would have difficulty answering, simply is contemptible.

 

The CDC has gone from a leader in protecting our health and viewed as the gold standard throughout the world, to a laughable corrupt, fringe  govt. organization over the past six months.  
 

 

Yes- so sad.   Listen to Dr. Faucci

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On 9/20/2020 at 3:53 PM, chengkp75 said:

Please advise me where the CDC has any jurisdiction over SOLAS regulations, or where CDC regulations intersect with SOLAS.  Having worked in the industry for over 40 years, and several in the cruise industry, I don't know of any intersect.

 

Please also advise me of what CDC wanted to "override" SOLAS "protocols" in the 90's?

 

The US ratified the SOLAS convention in 1914, 1929, 1948, and once the IMO became an entity, in 1974, which required that all language in the convention be enacted as law in all signatory nations, and the US has ratified all subsequent revisions of SOLAS.

Please advise what the CDC did in 1996 that "took issue" with SOLAS?

 

The CDC does not operate through a "loophole" for foreign flag ships.  As part of the Department of HHS, the US Public Health Service (USPH) contains eight divisions of HHS, which includes the CDC.  The USPH has, since 1798, has had the mission of preventing the introduction of infectious disease into the US by ships.  They have the mandate to inspect all ships, domestic or foreign, cargo or passenger, that arrive in the US from overseas, to determine the health of crew and passengers in order to issue "pratique" or a clean bill of health to allow the ship to dock and conduct commerce within the US.  In the 70's, the CDC started a program, the VSP (Vessel Sanitation Program) that was a co-operative agreement with the cruise industry, that, if followed by the cruise ships, would eliminate the mandatory inspection every time the ship re-entered the US, and substituted random inspections.  So, in this sense, there are special rules for cruise ships, ones that benefit the cruise lines.

 

In fact, the CDC and USPH, has always had complete control over the health standards of all foreign flag ships, not just cruise ships.  Once the ship applies to enter US waters, just like any other country, they need to meet the sanitation requirements of that country.  The CDC and USPH do not have a mandate to protect the health of passengers on foreign ships, no more than the USCG has a mandate to enforce their regulations on foreign flag ships, only those of SOLAS, but the consensus is that if the ship follows the VSP at all times, then the passengers and crew will have less opportunity for bringing an infectious disease back into the US.

 

The VSP is still a co-operative venture between the CDC and the cruise lines, both working to reach agreement between what is best epidemiological practices, and what is attainable by the cruise lines.  The cruise lines would far more prefer to operate under the VSP than to have a full sanitation inspection and health interviews with a percentage of crew and passengers each week before the passengers can disembark.

 

I have not only researched this, but have worked and lived this environment for years, so you're not "telling me anything", unless you can show the interaction between SOLAS and CDC.

wow all you did was plagiarize wikipedia.  The answers are out there. I believe to spare you from further embarrassment,  I suggest you cease & desist this back and forth tennis match.  It’s obvious you MUST have the last word. I’m sorry but this is supposed to be a fun place to exchange knowledge and a common experience of cruising.  Thank you for taking the fun out of it by your filibustering.

 

GOOD DAY SIR...

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57 minutes ago, joelheather said:

wow all you did was plagiarize wikipedia.  The answers are out there. I believe to spare you from further embarrassment,  I suggest you cease & desist this back and forth tennis match.  It’s obvious you MUST have the last word. I’m sorry but this is supposed to be a fun place to exchange knowledge and a common experience of cruising.  Thank you for taking the fun out of it by your filibustering.

 

GOOD DAY SIR...

Wow... filibustering....

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7 hours ago, joelheather said:

wow all you did was plagiarize wikipedia.  The answers are out there. I believe to spare you from further embarrassment,  I suggest you cease & desist this back and forth tennis match.  It’s obvious you MUST have the last word. I’m sorry but this is supposed to be a fun place to exchange knowledge and a common experience of cruising.  Thank you for taking the fun out of it by your filibustering.

 

GOOD DAY SIR...

Nope, not wiki, but the source documents for reference.  "The answers are out there", sounds like X-files to me.  Please, I ask you to embarrass me by showing the intersect between the CDC and SOLAS.  I'd like to check your response with the copy of the 2014 edition of SOLAS that is sitting on the bookshelf in the ship's conference room next door, and the 2018 VSP manual I have downloaded.  Wow, you must not be much of a tennis player, if two statements and two rebuttals equals a "back and forth tennis match".  I guess the only one who is allowed to have "a fun place to exchange knowledge" is you, since anyone who disagrees is "filibustering", because I cite facts and you only make vague accusations, and distortions.

 

"The truth IS out there", and it, not I, has the last word.

Edited by chengkp75

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56 minutes ago, chengkp75 said:

Nope, not wiki, but the source documents for reference.  "The answers are out there", sounds like X-files to me.  Please, I ask you to embarrass me by showing the intersect between the CDC and SOLAS.  I'd like to check your response with the copy of the 2014 edition of SOLAS that is sitting on the bookshelf in the ship's conference room next door, and the 2018 VSP manual I have downloaded.  Wow, you must not be much of a tennis player, if two statements and two rebuttals equals a "back and forth tennis match".  I guess the only one who is allowed to have "a fun place to exchange knowledge" is you, since anyone who disagrees is "filibustering", because I cite facts and you only make vague accusations, and distortions.

 

"The truth IS out there", and it, not I, has the last word.

So Chengkp75 have you had a chance to read the panels report ? Are the 74 recommendations doable in the near future?

 

What crew would be required to wear PPE's?

 

I think the crew would love the 1 per cabin!

Edited by beerman2

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9 minutes ago, beerman2 said:

So Chengkp75 have you had a chance to read the panels report ? Are the 74 recommendations doable in the near future?

 

What crew would be required to wear PPE's?

 

I think the crew would love the 1 per cabin!

I have skimmed some of the summaries, and some of the points.  Whether the 74 points are "doable" in the near future depends greatly on what the cruise lines come up with in their actual plans.  This is just an advisory board's recommendation, and you will note that in nearly every point, they state "the cruise line should" do such and such "in their response plan".  So, this really isn't a response plan that can be presented to the CDC for approval to restart cruising, it is a "position paper" where if the CDC agrees with the points, then the lines need to come up with specific procedures and protocols in company specific plans, including the actual contracts with private health providers and places for off site quarantine, before the CDC will allow sailing to resume.

 

This depends on what you mean by "PPE".  I wear PPE every day at work, being safety toe work boots.  I wear various other PPE depending on the job I am doing:  welding gloves, safety glasses, face shield, rubber apron, etc.  Cruise ship crew have always worn some PPE, like the latex gloves the cabin stewards wear.  I haven't delved too deeply into the nuts and bolts of what they say about PPE (my day job tends to get in the way), but it would be job specific, and each job may have different PPE requirements.

 

One crew per cabin will also mitigate against the older ships, and will mean less crew, and likely even less passenger capacity, as they will likely have to move senior staff into pax cabins, along with providing quarantine and treatment cabins set aside.

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14 minutes ago, chengkp75 said:

I have skimmed some of the summaries, and some of the points.  Whether the 74 points are "doable" in the near future depends greatly on what the cruise lines come up with in their actual plans.  This is just an advisory board's recommendation, and you will note that in nearly every point, they state "the cruise line should" do such and such "in their response plan".  So, this really isn't a response plan that can be presented to the CDC for approval to restart cruising, it is a "position paper" where if the CDC agrees with the points, then the lines need to come up with specific procedures and protocols in company specific plans, including the actual contracts with private health providers and places for off site quarantine, before the CDC will allow sailing to resume.

 

This depends on what you mean by "PPE".  I wear PPE every day at work, being safety toe work boots.  I wear various other PPE depending on the job I am doing:  welding gloves, safety glasses, face shield, rubber apron, etc.  Cruise ship crew have always worn some PPE, like the latex gloves the cabin stewards wear.  I haven't delved too deeply into the nuts and bolts of what they say about PPE (my day job tends to get in the way), but it would be job specific, and each job may have different PPE requirements.

 

One crew per cabin will also mitigate against the older ships, and will mean less crew, and likely even less passenger capacity, as they will likely have to move senior staff into pax cabins, along with providing quarantine and treatment cabins set aside.

Thanks I should have added do you think it's enough for CDC's approval if that is indeed what cruiselines present to them?

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40 minutes ago, beerman2 said:

Thanks I should have added do you think it's enough for CDC's approval if that is indeed what cruiselines present to them?

I’m sure @chengkp75 has an opinion on that.  Mine is.... not even close.  This is not a plan, especially the elements related to a significant outbreak.

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4 minutes ago, d9704011 said:

I’m sure @chengkp75 has an opinion on that.  Mine is.... not even close.  This is not a plan, especially the elements related to a significant outbreak.

They are much further along than what they have/haven’t done though

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11 minutes ago, beerman2 said:

They are much further along than what they have/haven’t done though

After six months of being pretty much idle, I’m not impressed but I’m not surprised.  I think their main sticking points are the issues around recommendations 50 to 54; what to do in the event of a significant outbreak.  Evidence suggests that ships with a number of infected passengers onboard cannot rely on national, state or local authorities to take on the burden of evacuation, quarantine and care that may be required.

 

I enjoy cruising and have done plenty of it but I just don’t see the industry being able to start up again in the near future out of US ports.

Edited by d9704011

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