Four dead on Florida-bound Holland America cruise ship

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FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — Four elderly passengers currently on board Holland America’s Zaandam cruise ship have died, the cruise line said in a statement on Friday.

The cruise line did not provide any other details about the deaths. However, the cruise line said two passengers tested positive for COVID-19 and 138 people on the ship are experiencing “influenza-like illness symptoms.”

The ship is currently off the coast of Panama and is currently transferring healthy guests to a sister ship. The cruise line is working with Panamanian authorities to approve transit across the Panama Canal with plans to arrive in Fort Lauderdale before the end of the month.

“Zaandam was sailing a South America cruise that departed Buenos Aires, Argentina, on March 7 and was originally scheduled to end at San Antonio, Chile, on March 21,” the company said in the statement.

No passengers have been off the ship since March 14 in Punta Arenas, Chile.

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