Last updated: 04:17 PM ET, Fri March 27 2015

Are Holland America Line Ships the Cleanest?

Cruise Line & Cruise Ship | Holland America Line | Theresa Norton | March 27, 2015

Are Holland America Line Ships the Cleanest?

PHOTO: The Nieuw Amsterdam is one of three Holland America Line ships to earn perfect 100 scores on recent health inspections. (Courtesy of Holland America Line)

Are Holland America Line cruise ships the cleanest at sea? The premium line just announced that three of its ships earned perfect scores on the surprise U.S. Public Health inspections conducted by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in recent weeks.

The Statendam, Nieuw Amsterdam and Ryndam each earned 100. The news comes shortly after the line’s Eurodam achieved a perfect score last month — for the eighth consecutive time.

“Our ships always strive for perfect scores during U.S.P.H inspections, and it’s very gratifying for everyone on board and ashore when we meet our goals,” said Holland America President Orlando Ashford. “Congratulations to the teams on these ships for showing how a score of 100 can be achieved through hard work and dedication.”

The Statendam aced its Feb. 19 unannounced inspection while docked at Hilo, Hawaii. Nieuw Amsterdam was inspected on March 1 at Fort Lauderdale, while Ryndam completed its inspection March 8 in Tampa, Fla. Earlier, Holland America’s Noordam garnered a perfect score on Jan. 5.

Other ships that achieved the top ranking so far this year, according to records by the CDC’s Vessel Sanitation Program (VSP), include Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Jewel on Feb. 14 and Norwegian Sky on Jan. 2, Carnival Cruise Line’s Carnival Pride on Feb. 8 and Carnival Miracle on Feb. 1, and Princess Cruises’ Ruby Princess on Jan. 3.

The only ship to fail the inspection so far this year is the Caribbean Fantasy, operated by America Cruise Ferries out of Puerto Rico to the Dominican Republic and other nearby ports. The ship scored an 84 on Jan. 23 — 85 or lower is considered a “not satisfactory” score.

The inspection report listed several infractions, including a non-working oven, improperly tested potable water, and black spots appearing to be mold on an ice machine. The company’s corrective report does not appear on the VSP website yet.

The VSP inspections were introduced in the early 1970s and are required for all passenger ships that call at a U.S. port. The inspections are unannounced and are carried out by U.S. Public Health officials twice a year for every cruise ship.

The score, on a scale from one to 100, is assigned on the basis of a checklist involving dozens of areas of assessment, encompassing hygiene and sanitation of food (from storage to preparation), overall galley cleanliness, water, shipboard personnel and the ship as a whole.


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