Alaska May Sue The CDC
Following Florida’s announcement last week that it is suing the CDC in hopes that the agency will lift the ‘Conditional Sailing Order,’ Alaska may be next in line.
Of the possibility to sue, Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy said Saturday, “If we don’t get a positive dialogue this week, that’s a real possibility because the decision will be crushing to Alaska.”
Each season the cruise industry is shut down in Alaska, the state loses over 3 billion dollars.
Transportation Secretary Says Ships May Sail By Mid-Summer
At a White House press briefing over the weekend, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said “The CDC is hopeful that a lot of these operators will be in an opportunity to be sailing by mid-summer.”
Despite the optimistic comment, the CDC still hasn’t yet laid out full details on what cruise lines must do actually to get back to sea.
Ships require two to three months of advanced notice to be ready to sail again, so each week that passes removes a chunk of potential sailing time this summer.
STORY FOR BOTH: How Alaska Hopes to Save the 2021 Cruise Season
CDC Replaces Small Section of Conditional Sailing Order
Sometime over the past week, the CDC edited a small section of Phase 2 of its Conditional Sailing Order. Previously, the update had said that cruise lines had to “ensure disembarking and embarking passengers do not occupy the same enclosed or semi-enclosed areas within the same 12-hour period.”
Now, the “within the same 12 hour period” verbiage is replaced with “to the extent practicable.”
This change would make turnaround days much easier on cruise lines and ports — particularly for smaller terminals that do not have separate gangways.