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Gastro Outbreak On Cruise Ship In Sydney

More than 150 passengers have been struck down with a gastro bug on board a cruise ship that has docked in Sydney after a 12-day trip to New Zealand.

The Diamond Princess cruise ship arrived at Circular Quay on Thursday morning with 158 passengers suffering from norovirus gastroenteritis.

Passenger Stephen Dinale told SMH that "people were vomiting in pools and running down corridors covering their mouths".

"A lot of the staff are wearing face masks, gloves," he said. "I'm going to kiss the ground. No that I like the pavements of Sydney but I'm going to be kissing the ground as soon as I get out of customs."

South Eastern Sydney Local Health District told AAP the passengers and a small number of crew had come down with a bug and were attended to by the ship's doctor.

There were no medical disembarkations or admissions to hospital.

The ship had just finished a 12-day cruise to New Zealand with more than 2800 passengers on board.

The outbreak has been contained, with about 35 passengers still affected by the gastro bug when the ship docked in Sydney, Princess Cruises said in a statement.

New passengers boarding from Sydney on Thursday are advised there will be a short delay because of cleaning, Princess Cruises said.

There have been several incidents of gastro on board cruise ships in the past month.

Passengers on the P&O cruise ship Pacific Eden labelled it a "floating disaster" after about 50 of the 1500 people on board were taken ill with norovirus over the Christmas period.

In mid December, 182 passengers out of the 3566 on board Royal Caribbean's cruise ship Explorer of the Seas were also struck down by a stomach bug.


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