Ship sail

Carnival Cruise passengers say the ship was overwhelmed with COVID-19 positive patients

Passengers say the crew’s response has been chaotic.

SEATTLE — Passengers on a Carnival cruise ship that docked in Seattle on Tuesday say more than 100 people aboard the ship tested positive for COVID-19 and the ship was submerged.

Several people are saying right now that they are in Seattle-area hotels quarantining after testing positive or being exposed to someone with COVID-19. Carnival Cruise Line did not confirm the number of people who tested positive on the ship, but said there were a number of positive cases.

“As soon as I was diagnosed with COVID, I didn’t feel safe,” said Darren Sieferston, a cruise passenger from Miami to Seattle.

Sieferston is in quarantine at the hotel after testing positive for COVID on the ship. He lives in Nevada. He said he had taken seven cruises since August and said each trip had COVID-19 positive passengers. He thinks the response from the crew on this recent Carnival cruise has been chaotic.

“They didn’t have enough staff to handle the emergency that was happening, period,” Sieferston said. “They were overwhelmed and they didn’t have a back-up course on how to handle about 200 people affected by COVID. We all suffered.”

Passengers tell KING 5 they waited hours for meals, were not properly isolated and were unable to reach medical staff.

“We couldn’t call anyone… Basically, we sat in the room, you call and it rang, rang, rang, and rang all day,” Sieferston said.

Sieferston shared a photo with KING 5, which he said was hung outside the elevator on his floor and included the names and room numbers of those who tested positive. He called it an invasion of privacy.

“It’s just unacceptable. This ship is so poorly run. I fear for people going up to Alaska,” Sieferston said.

The ship landed on Tuesday and is already on its next trip to Alaska. Carnival would not comment on whether additional coverage would be taken for this trip.

Carnival said there were no serious health issues. According to the company’s website, customers should be fully vaccinated and tested before travel. Some exemptions are accommodated with appropriate testing.