Passenger Aboard CARNIVAL VISTA Dies of COVID-19 After Voyage

(Source: Carnival File Image)

A passenger who tested positive for COVID-19 during a recent sailing of the M/V CARNIVAL VISTA, Carnival Cruise Line confirmed in a recent statement. Marilyn Tackett, 77, an Oklahoma native, was treated aboard the vessel by staff before being evacuated to a hospital in Belize. Despite her family’s successful efforts to raise the $30,000 needed for medical repatriation by helicopter to the United States, as insurance would not cover the expense, Tackett sadly passed away on August 15, 2021.

Carnival told media in their statement Tackett “almost certainly” did not catch COVID-19 on the voyage, although pre-boarding COVID testing was not required at the time for vaccinated passengers, including Tackett. Though Tackett was the only passenger to become ill, 26 crewmembers aboard the CARNIVAL VISTA also contracted COVID-19, and each of them had been vaccinated previously, too.

“We have continued to provide support to her family and are not going to add to their sadness by commenting further,” Carnival said in a statement. “Unfortunately, no venue on land or at sea is COVID-free right now, but we are committed to protecting the health and safety of our guests, crew and the communities we visit, and [we] have not hesitated to act quickly and go beyond existing public health guidelines.”

Since this recent outbreak, new requirements have been implemented to reduce the COVID-19 transmission risk aboard Carnival’s cruise ships. These new requirements include pre-boarding testing for all passengers, masking requirements in some indoor public spaces, and, most notably, a full vaccination requirement for all passengers over the age of 12. (Previously, Carnival allowed select non-vaccinated passengers to board if they agreed to an extra fee and testing.) These new requirements also are in response to a new vaccine mandate for cruise ships entering the Bahamas, effective September 3, 2021. The Bahamas is a popular destination for cruise ships sailing to and from the US.

We at the Herd Law Firm grieve for the Tackett family in their loss. We actively represent passengers and crewmembers who are injured or become ill, from COVID-19 or other conditions, arising from work or travel aboard commercial vessels, including cruise ships.

This article is intended for general interest and does not constitute legal advice.

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