We have received reports that 182 people onboard the Royal Caribbean cruise liner the Explorer of the Seas have been struck by a gastro illness during a 14 night cruise around New Zealand.

Australian holidaymakers and crew are believed to have suffered gastrointestinal symptoms including vomiting and stomach cramps. NSW Ambulance paramedics met the ship at Sydney’s Circular Quay this morning, and South Eastern Sydney Local Health District have been informed.

It is standard practice for cruise passengers suffering gastrointestinal illnesses such as Norovirus, E Coli, and Salmonella to be confined to their cabins to prevent further outbreak. Such illnesses are commonly acquired by consuming contaminated food and beverages, particularly in buffets, and ingesting contaminated recreational water such as in swimming pools.

A Royal Caribbean statement advised that the ship, which is the largest cruise liner in Australia, would undergo “enhanced cleaning and sanitisation to prevent any illness affecting future cruises.”

The affected cruise departed Sydney on 2 December 2015 and returned this morning after a 14 night tour of New Zealand. It is due to depart later today for an 8 night cruise of the South Pacific.

Our cruise injury specialists are currently investigating the illness reports and urge any passengers to come forward that were affected as you may be entitled to compensation for pain and suffering, medical expenses, and loss of enjoyment of your holiday.

If you have been affected by this outbreak, contact our travel law experts by telephoning 1800 25 1800 or make an online enquiry.