UPDATE: The story was updated Jan. 25, 2018 to reflect that a fourth Carnival cruise ship failed sanitation inspections.
Carnival Cruise Line managed to get past Kathie Lee Gifford as their spokeswoman. They even managed to overcome the drama of a 2013 fire that left 4,000 passengers stranded in the Gulf of Mexico, with no hot water and few working toilets.
But last week, Carnival Cruise Line began what seems to be its terrible, horrible, no good, very bad month.
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The problems all started when three cruise ships got failing grades from inspectors.
Aboard the Carnival Vista, Carnival Cruise Line’s newest ship, crew members hid trolleys of potentially hazardous food, equipment and dirty dishware from sanitation inspectors.
Fruit flies were found by the buffet and in a Parmesan cheese container. Crew failed to appropriately document illnesses on board.
On the Carnival Breeze, another of the Doral-based line’s newest vessels, machinery was found to be corroded or not functioning properly. About 25 garbage bins overflowing with waste were found by inspectors near an area where food was handled.
These violations and dozens of others landed both ships failing grades from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Vessel Sanitation Program, which routinely inspects cruise ships in an effort to control the spread of gastrointestinal illnesses. Ships must score 86 points or higher, out of 100, to pass.
On Jan. 25, the Miami Herald reported that another Carnival ship, The Carnival Liberty, also failed a sanitation inspection. That makes four in less than two months.
According to the report:
“The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Vessel Sanitation Program found at least three dead flying insects inside a dishwasher, a beverage carton in a refrigerator with a long hair on it, and corroded, dirty or broken machinery.”
But the tales get worse yet, and no we’re not talking about Carnival’s Guy Fieri restaurant, Guy’s Burger Joint either.
On Friday, a woman on a Carnival ship that left Jacksonville got sick and plunged from her cabin balcony to her death several decks below. A horrible, tragic accident. Two days later, another woman fell from the Carnival Triumph in the Gulf of Mexico.
We’re not saying Carni is the Titanic. But this much bad news is disconcerting, to say the least.
Hopefully the spate of bad luck is over before singer Carly Rae Jepsen heads out on Carnival LIVE sailing from California to the Mexican Riviera.