Royal Caribbean cuts cruise short after hundreds on board come d

Royal Caribbean cuts cruise short after hundreds on board come down with gastrointestinal illness

(Source: WESH/Royal Caribbean/CNN) (Source: WESH/Royal Caribbean/CNN)

PORT CANAVERAL, FL (WESH/CNN) - There's not much that can ruin a dream vacation faster than a stomach bug. The virus can spread fast in closed quarters like cruise ships.

In fact, it's become such a problem, the Royal Caribbean Oasis of the Seas is making a bee-line back to its home port early after a disease made a rapid spread.

One hundred ten new cases of sickness are reported, bringing the total for the cruise to 277 passengers and crew, out of almost 9,000 people onboard.

The cruise line is not calling the sickness norovirus, instead of saying passengers have a gastrointestinal illness.

Norovirus is a type of such illness sometimes seen in large numbers on cruise ships.

The Centers for Disease Control says the illness is characterized by stomach pain, nausea and diarrhea.

“We think the right thing to do is to get everyone home early rather than have guests worry about their health," a Royal Caribbean spokesman said.

The cruise line is refunding the full price of the cruise to every passenger.

Passengers have already missed one stop in Jamaica, and now will miss a visit to Cozumel, and will be returning home one day early on Saturday instead of Sunday.

Heading back to port early also gives crews more time to sanitize the ship before its next sailing.

Copyright 2019 WESH via CNN. All rights reserved.

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