Norwegian cruise ship blocked from docking in Mauritius over 'health risks'

A Norwegian cruise ship has been denied permission to dock in Mauritius due to “potential health risks” after passengers reported feeling unwell.

Local authorities on Sunday denied permission for the Norwegian Dawn vessel, which has 2,184 passengers and 1,026 crew on board, to access the Mauritius capital of Port Louis, citing “health risks.”

Samples have been taken from about 15 people being kept in isolation – due to their state of health – on board the Norwegian Dawn.

In a statement, the Mauritius Ports Authority said on Sunday: “The decision not to allow the cruise ship access to the quay was taken in order to avoid any health risks.

“The health and safety of passengers as well as that of the country as a whole are of the utmost importance to the authorities.”

The authority did not reveal details about the type of illness being managed on board the vessel, but hoped to have results within 48 hours.

About 2,000 people had been due to disembark at Port Louis after completing their cruise – another 2,279 new passengers had been expected to board the ship, the port authority said.

“Passengers who were due to board the Norwegian Dawn and begin their cruise from Mauritius today will not be able to do so due to potential health risks. They will have to be relocated to available hotel establishments,” the port authority added.

The ship’s arrival was scheduled for February 25, but it didn’t go to Reunion Island and arrived in Mauritius earlier, on February 24.