Cruise-line company Carnival Corp. (CCL) - Get Report received a letter from the U.S. House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure requesting documents concerning the company's response to the coronavirus outbreak on its ships.
Committee Chair Peter DeFazio (D-Oregon) sent a letter to Carnival CEO Arnold Donald requesting internal documents and communications related to COVID-19 since Jan. 1.
Those documents include information on when the company had regarding potential infections, public health implications and possible exposure of its passengers and crew to covid-19 as well as decisions made by the company upon learning of that information.
“Cruise ships are a fertile breeding ground for infectious diseases due to their environmental conditions and physical structure” the letter,which was published by Bloomberg said.
"We expect that travel restrictions will eventually ease, and cruise ships will begin to sail again. We also believe that when that happens, more robust health precautions and new social distancing protocols will be paramount to preventing the re-emergence and spread of new COVID-19 infections," the letter stated.
The company said in a statement to Bloomberg that it will fully cooperate with the committee, stating that "our goal is the same as the committee's."
Last month, Donald defended the company's response to the pandemic following an article in Bloomberg focused on the challenges and delays the company experienced in addressing the outbreak.
That article was cited in DeFazio's letter.
Donald said that the company "followed protocol" despite outbreaks that occurred aboard its Diamond Princess and Grand Princess ships in February.
Those infections eventually led to 815 passenger infections and 15 deaths. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a "no sail order" for all cruises on March 14.
Carnival shares at last check dropped 12% to $14.01.