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mcloaked

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About mcloaked

  • Rank
    Cool Cruiser

About Me

  • Location
    UK
  • Interests
    Ballroom dancing
  • Favorite Cruise Line(s)
    P&O
  • Favorite Cruise Destination Or Port of Call
    Mediterranean

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  1. You might like to quote the figures in a month's time when the huge increase in positive cases feeds through to the delayed rise in hospital cases, and the subsequent rise in deaths. Yes it is true that today the number of severe cases is not that high - but of the large number of people who have been infected the past few weeks, it will take a couple of weeks for those among them to reach the stage where they require hospitalisation - that is what happened in the first wave, and although treatments today are much better than they were in March/April only a small fraction of people who get the severe pneumonia will avoid death even with current best treatment. If nothing is done and positive cases continue to rise then it is a matter of science, and not speculation that the result of pressure on hospital beds and death will follow - that is why the governments are taking action to change the rules on what people can and cannot do for the coming months - you may not believe it, but the science is there to see. Unless everyone does their own bit to prevent transmission of the virus then the outcome will be many more people suffering and dying than need be. Flu adds to the misery. Yes we all take it for granted that we personally won't die of flu - but as you can look up the figures not everybody who gets flu survives. If you are young, and fit, the chances are you will have a miserable couple of weeks, and then get back to normal life again, but if you have underlying medical conditions, or are on the older end of the demographic spectrum, that is not necessarily the path the flu will take if you are unlucky enough to be infected. So having the flu jab will not only reduce your own chances of getting flu, but also reduce the chance of others getting it - the more flu virus there is in circulation in society the more any one individual is likely to be infected - and the same applies to coronavirus - the difference is there is no vaccine yet for coronavirus so the only mechanism we as a society has to limit the number of people who become severely ill and/or die is to get everyone to follow the rules that the science indicates will limit transmission. Whether the outcome is a lot of suffering and death or less this winter will depend on what proportion of members of society have the view that their own personal choice and freedom to do as they wish as opposed to those members of society who are happy to do what they can to minimise the chance that they are personally responsible for onward spread of the virus. In some places that personal responsibility will be widespread, but in other places collections of people will say their own freedom of choice overrides any responsibility they have to others in society - we will see what takes place when we get to the spring of next year.
  2. On other consideration about covid and cruises - let's say there was a cruise where 1% of the 2000 passengers became ill and needed a hospital bed with a ventilator. That would be 20 passengers needing an ICU bed on the ship if the ship was at sea and with nowhere to dock. How many ICU beds does a typical ship have in its medical unit? It is a similar consideration for populations on land - how many countries have readily available ICU beds with a ventilator, that would still have capacity over and above the non-pandemic need for ventilator beds, as well as around 1% or more of the population becoming seriously ill with covid-19. That is the problem that countries around the world are grappling with, and trying to prevent the terrible situation that arose during the first wave in countries like Italy where doctors had to make the impossible decision about which of the patients who may be most likely to survive gets the ICU bed, and which patients should be allowed to die. Covid-19 is not a game, and not a disease anyone would have predicted or wanted, but those in charge of countries, and companies have to try to traverse the minefield of trying to protect life, as well as trying to protect the economy - and it is one of the toughest problems the world has had to deal with in a century.
  3. There is one factor that has become more relevant in recent weeks - studies have shown during the first wave of coronavirus that some of those who became ill with covid-19 were concurrently infected with flu. Statistics from the research showed that the risk of death for those people infected with covid-19, as well as flu at the same time, had a six times higher mortality rate. That is the reason behind the UK's big drive to try to have everyone over 50 get the flu vaccine this year. As we move into the second wave of coronavirus approaching the autumn, which is a time when the annual flu season begins to get under way, and more people spend time indoors as the weather gets colder, there is already an exponential rise in covid cases, and as case numbers rise, so hospital covid admissions will also rise in the next few weeks, and the death rate will follow suit in rising also. To help to limit the hospital admissions numbers, and the number of people who will die, it would be very helpful if as many people as possible do get their flu vaccine, before too long into the winter, and also keep distancing when in public, and do whatever every individual can to help limiting other people's exposure because none of us can know if we are infectious, unless we have a current positive swab test. Whatever people do and whatever governments do to help, there will be more deaths this year than in a non-pandemic year. It is easy to talk about statistics, but we should all remember that every death is a person, and someone's mother, father, brother, sister, child or best friend or other relative. The cruise line directors and managers of course want the cruise business to survive, and it probably will, and emerge stronger than ever once the pandemic is over, and clearly there are a lot of us who have been cruising for some years, and who can't wait to get back on the ships again before too long,. but in the meantime we all have to try to survive and not become one of the death statistics, even though in percentage terms the number of deaths in a month does not look like a large number - but a small fraction of a large population is a significant number of real people.
  4. Vaccines provide a 'herd immunity' - any one person is way less likely to be infected if a substantial proportion of the population is vaccinated, and this applies not just to covid-19 when a vaccine does become available. Hence the measles, mumps, rubella vaccine if given to most children means every child is less likely to catch it. Even if a coronavirus vaccine was only 50% effective, if most people were vaccinated then transmission would be significantly reduced, and the number of people with the virus at any one time would be also reduced substantially, and that leads to less people needing the limited number of hospital beds, and less people dying overall, and a lower cost to society as a whole. It would also mean significant reduction in the chance of a repeat of the terrible situation at the start of the pandemic where ships had hundreds of people infected with covid-19 and some pretty ill. It is possible to argue that although you have the right to choose whether or not you are vaccinated, you don't have any ethically justified reason to leave yourself open to being infected and then consequentially passing the virus on to another human being who then may be very sick or die as a result. So it is the responsibility to others that would be helped by being vaccinated if most of us do so, rather then accepting you might be ill with the disease.
  5. One useful tip is to get the pneumococcal jab - the jab protects against between 13 and 23 of the most common strains of chest infection. It is a once only jab and does not need boosters. Might be worth considering ahead of future cruises - not related to coronavirus vaccines currently being developed, but for the common chest infections, which might explain some of the Cunard coughs it could protect you.
  6. In the news today Cunard has considerably extended their operations pause: https://www.cunard.com/en-gb/contact-us/travel-health-advisories "As a result of the continuing impact of Covid-19, Cunard has further extended its pause in operations to sailings up to 25 March 2021 for Queen Elizabeth, 18 April 2021 for Queen Mary 2 and 16 May 2021 for Queen Victoria."
  7. I tried clicking once the page loaded and it did eventually play once it got past the initial 'ad' section that just spun for a while - anyway the gist was that Carnival was not planning to restart cruises from the USA at present due to the 'vibrant' level of covid19 there, and that the much lower level of virus in Europe meant that possibly the first cruises may restart from Italy later in the year, with short several day cruises to nowhere, starting and ending in an Italian port, and possibly stopping at only Italian ports. Experience gained from the first few cruises once this happens will inform them so that further planning can be done on the basis of what happens on the first few small cruises they operate. He said that Carnival was closely associated and negotiating with all the regulatory bodies governing the planning and authorisation of cruises, not only in the USA but across the globe, and that cruises would begin when they felt that the level of risk was reduced to below the level of risk that passengers would experience on land. But he also said that expecting there to be no cases of covid19 on board future cruises was unrealistic. He also said that as each day passes more is known about the virus, and that they are working very hard to bring in whatever measures are deemed necessary to reduce the level of risk on the ships to an acceptable level, which means, the usual distancing and hygiene measures that have been brought in on land, as well as not having self serve buffet restaurants. He also said that never again would there be a repeat of the situation that happened at the start of the pandemic with ships unable to get to port and large numbers of passengers and crew ill and having to remain on the ships. He also said that every cruise that they do in the future will already have in place negotiated ports to go to, with measures in place if any passenger were to become ill on board so isolating an ill passenger and getting him or her off the ship would already be in the negotiated plans with the port authorities where the ships are sailing. He could not yet give any dates for the end of the pause, and as soon as the regulatory authorities give the go ahead, and the ships are fully prepared and the crews trained with all necessary measures in place then they would announce a restart, but the time wasn't yet. Of course this is only a summary of a 20 minute interview - so to get the full info it is necessary to watch the interview.
  8. There is an interesting level headed interview with the Carnival CEO from 4 days ago about plans for resumption of cruises - the interview was in Miami and although centred on US cruise ops, there is some discussion of initial plans in Europe: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/videos/2020-08-17/carnival-ceo-on-aidi-cruises-returning-to-sea-video?fbclid=IwAR3tRYe6OOrl8YFauK2JFm4v-65Jx00hVFHgTmE3uPkMpjDKgvK5h_04YS8
  9. I guess that despite the very clear message that wandering off risks being infected in the wider community, and then leads to the possibility of one of those infected then infecting many once they got back on board particularly when pre-symptomatic then the response you have detailed from MSC seems totally reasonable. They clearly cannot afford to risk hundreds of people on the voyage being infected and a repeat of those awful virus infected voyages that happened at the start of the pandemic. The 'new normal' will have to be the way forward until and unless there is an effective vaccine - but many don't accept this reality. I can't wait to get back on board - but I have to curb my eagerness until the new operational methods have been established, and am crossing every finger I have that a vaccine will in principle be shown to be functional before the end of the year even if widespread availability is not until some time next year.
  10. Many companies unfortunately rely on Windows servers, as well as Windows desktops for staff - Windows is the most vulnerable operating system to cyber attack - if Carnival's companies were using Linux servers they would have been hugely less vulnerable. Sadly this has not been taken on board by a lot of companies and organisations. Those companies who invested in Linux systems and expertise are in a much better position than those who have not. Either way I do hope that Cunard is not the brand impacted in this event, but I suppose information will emerge in due course - and hopefully the significant number of Cunard customers have not had their personal data exposed to the possibility of further attack at a personal level. It does take time for companies to try to recover from cyber attack events - hopefully it won't be too long - but in some cases (eg the recent Blackbaud exposure) it can be a month or two before information is released - hopefully in this case it will be a lot sooner!
  11. It would normally be the case that the company would contact any customers whose data has been breached so that they are aware of the security implications. However that contact may not happen immediately.
  12. There is the direct SEC filing at https://www.sec.gov/ix?doc=/Archives/edgar/data/815097/000095014220002039/eh2001078_8k.htm and also the report at https://www.teiss.co.uk/carnival-corporation-ransomware-attack/
  13. They could and that might be more attractive to passengers than going places where there is a lot of uncertainty!
  14. Perhaps it makes sense to have the option to ask you to allow your vaccination record to be shared with the passport office, if the other alternative would be that you are not permitted to board unless the vaccination status can be confirmed? But yes the GDPR regs would still need to be satisfied. A bit like your travel insurance can lead to refused cover if you haven't shared any key relevant medical conditions with the insurer.
  15. We are also hoping next year will see a possible restart - though of course it isn't just what Cunard do with regard to keeping the ship safe as well as its occupants, both passengers and crew, but it also depends on what any potential port of call does with regard to letting the ships in at all, and also what the town/city there has in place for keeping people safe too - and that is not really under Cunard's control. But we live in hope!
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