St Thomas, USVI

One day after Royal Caribbean announced that two guests on the first cruise ship to sail from a U.S. port since the pandemic shutdown have tested positive for COVID-19, the governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands implored Florida and Gov. Ron DeSantis to allow cruise lines to mandate vaccinations.

Albert Bryan Jr., governor of the U.S. Virgin Islands, said the infection of vaccinated passengers is precisely the reason cruise lines need the freedom to require vaccinations. While vaccines do not eliminate risks, he said, not having them could be catastrophic, including to the people in the islands that cruise passengers visit.

“It emphasizes the need for us to have these protocols,” Bryan said. “Our ports, which are some of the most popular ports of call for cruises in the Caribbean, are in the direct line of fire, alongside the other port of call destinations.

Two passengers on Celebrity cruise ship have tested positive

The infected passengers on the Celebrity Millennium were asymptomatic and immediately quarantined upon testing positive, the cruise line reported. All crew and passengers on the ship were reported to have been vaccinated before boarding, the cruise line said.