Holiday claims solicitors braced for Oriana winter vomiting flu cases


P&O cruises may face a heavy compensation bill, after around 340 passengers out of 1,843 fell ill with a suspected winter vomiting flu on board a 10-day cruise visiting Christmas markets round the Baltic.

Cruise Ship compensation

P&O have played down the number of passengers who fell ill on board the Oriana, saying only 6 currently are presenting symptoms of sickness and diarrhoea typical of Norovirus – and no staff have fallen ill.

Many passengers have disputed the conservative estimate of those affected, calling the Oriana a “plague ship”, with passengers on the point of “mutiny” over the outbreak of winter vomiting flu symptoms – as well as the way in which they were allegedly treated by P&O staff on board.

Some passengers say those who fell ill were blamed by staff for the illness through not being “clean” enough.

The Oriana set sail on 4 December and has docked at Southampton, where Southampton Port Authority is set to inspect the ship.

More cleaners and 2 nurses were taken on during the trip to cope with passengers suffering from vomiting and diarrhoea. The cruise ship has its own doctor on board and one passenger claims to have spent more than £1,000 on medical treatment as a result of winter vomiting flu symptoms.

The Oriana has previously been at the center of an outbreak of Norovirus – in 2009, a 67-year-old passenger died 3 days after disembarking, following treatment for Norovirus symptoms on board the Oriana.

P&O has already said it would cover medical expenses for any passengers affected, but many holiday makers are demanding a refund of the cost of the cruise. It is thought holiday claims solicitors are getting ready to handle a large number of claims from passengers who travelled on board the Oriana for the nightmare cruise.

Many passengers on the trip were confined to their cabins at the request of P&O and the company said they would be compensated for any trips and excursions missed as a result.

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