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Luxury Cruise Fails Health Inspection Test

Update Date: Jul 26, 2013 11:16 AM EDT

Cruise ships are popular vacation choices for friends and families since everything from food to entertainment are easily accessible on the immense vessel. Even though cruises appear to be quite the packaged deal, some of them might not be as clean as vacationers would hope. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the agency's Vessel Sanitation Program conducted a surprise health inspection on one of the more luxurious cruises and to the dismay of many, the cruise ship failed.

The surprised test done on the cruise ship, Silver Shadow occurred back in June when the vessel was docked in Skagway, AK. The agency had received photographs from an anonymous employee. The photographs revealed poor food sanitation with meat left in sinks and trays of food left unattended in hallways. From the latest inspection, the CDC has reported that the cruise is guilty for using an "organized effort" in order to hide 15 trolleys of food from the inspection officers. The report also included other practices such as pouring chlorine liquid over food to inform employees not to reuse it.

At the end of the surprise test, the Silver Shadow received a grade of 82. Any grade under 84 is considered to be "less than satisfactory." Aside from what the agency discovered, employees have also revealed poor practices. One of the employees stated he was told to sleep with food in his cabin. Another crewmember stated that a trolley full of food was also kept in their cabins in order to avoid the inspection.

This grade will surely affect the Silver Shadow's image, which is presented by Silversea Cruises as a luxurious cruise with a "world class" culinary experience. According to the company, the cruise can hold around 300 passengers and costs customers around $5000 a week.

The cruise was fined after the report but the CDC's program cannot force the ship to make any changes. It can only ask the ship to correct the health issues. According to the CDC, Silver Shadow is one of six cruise ships that have failed a health inspection. This number is already double the rate from last year's inspections. 

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