Mystery outbreak sickens 100 on cruise ship

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SAN DIEGO - Gastrointestinal illness has gripped 100 people on the cruise ship Celebrity Infinity, according to a report from the Centers for Disease Control.

Of the ship's 2,117 passengers, 95 have suffered from vomiting, diarrhea and other symptoms, the CDC said. The illness has also affected five members of the 964-person crew.

The CDC has yet to determine what's causing the ailments. Two staffers from the agency are scheduled to meet the West Coast-based ship in San Diego on Monday.

The Infinity left San Diego on March 29. It made its last stop in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, on April 10, according to MarineTraffic.com.

Celebrity Cruises has been taking action since the outbreak began, including increasing cleaning and disinfection procedures, keeping passengers informed and taking specimens from the afflicted for testing by the CDC, the agency says.

"I personally took off the luggage that was quarantined. I made sure it was all wrapped and everything." Said Todd.

Todd is a longshoreman who is in charge of unloading luggage off the ship. He and other longshoremen were given a choice as to whether they felt comfortable working.

"I’ve been wearing a mask, wearing gloves so I feel okay about it." Said Todd.

Of the 100 people who fell ill during the 15 nights, most began complaining of symptoms of the Norovirus four days ago.

"Food gets handled differently everywhere and things can happen." Said cruise ship passenger Patricia Upson.

Passengers like Patricia Upson who is set to board the ship says everyone should be prepared for illness if you travel abroad.

The Infinity left San Diego on March 29. It made its last stop in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, on April 10, according to MarineTraffic.com.

"I already bought my Imodium for the other way a couple of months ago so I was prepared, but we’ll see. " said Upson.

The ship is still scheduled to leave for another 15-night cruise to the Panama Canal. For the most part - those we spoke to getting ready to board the Celebrity Infinity tell us they’re unconcerned.

"They’re going to delay boarding so that they can sanitize even the terminal wherever they can. They’re doing all they can." Said cruise ship passenger Bonnie Matheson.

According to the Maritime Executive, this is the third time the Celebrity Infinity has suffered an outbreak of gastrointestinal illness, with others occurring in 2006 and 2013. The ship was built in 2001 and refurbished in 2011.

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