The fate of two cruise ships remains in limbo as Florida officials drag their feet on a decision to let them to dock at Port Everglades. The Zaandam cruise ship and its sister ship, the Rotterdam, are carrying hundreds of passengers. Four people have died aboard the stranded Holland America cruise ships due to COVID-19 complications.

Broward County commissioners were scheduled to vote this Tuesday on whether to allow the ships to dock. Though the county has delayed their decision pending a formal report from the cruise line, reports the Sun-Sentinel.

Governor Ron DeSantis commented on the situation on Monday, suggesting that resources in the state were already stretched too thin.

“We cannot afford to have people who are not even Floridians dumped into South Florida using up those valuable resources," he said, according to The Guardian.

"So, I’m in contact with the White House on this, I’m in contact with the local county officials in both Broward and Miami-Dade," he continued.

Florida has taken steps to curb the spread of the virus in the state, like closing beaches and piers indefinitely.

"We view this as a big, big problem and we do not want to see people dumped in southern Florida right now,” the governor said.

The cruise line was initially denied entry from several countries including Chile, Peru, and Mexico last week after reporting that they had 42 sick passengers abroad. Since then, four people aboard have died and more passengers reported having flu-like symptoms.

President of Holland America Line, Orlando Ashford, has begged for people to show “common human dignity” in a statement issued Monday. 

“We are dealing with a ‘not my problem’ syndrome. The international community, consistently generous and helpful in the face of human suffering, shut itself off to Zaandam leaving her to fend for herself," said Ashford.

"The COVID-19 situation is one of the most urgent tests of our common humanity. To slam the door in the face of these people betrays our deepest human values."

The Zaandam and Rotterdam are currently en route to South Florida and are expected to reach here later this week.

However, since the county has not set a date on when they will approve or deny disembarkment, it's unclear what the cruise line will do.


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