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VIDEO: Cruise ship passengers brawl in the midst of coronavirus scare — but it turned out to be the flu
MSC Meraviglia cruise ship, which was turned away by Jamaica and the Cayman Islands after a crew member tested positive for flu, is seen docked in Cozumel, Mexico, on Feb. 28. Mexico's Health Ministry confirmed the country's first cases of coronavirus on Friday, saying two men who recently returned from Italy tested positive for the virus. (JOSE CASTILLO/AFP via Getty Images)

VIDEO: Cruise ship passengers brawl in the midst of coronavirus scare — but it turned out to be the flu

Panic and chaos on the high seas

Late last week a cruise ship was turned away from ports in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands due to fears that one or more passengers on board may have had coronavirus.

The ship was eventually allowed to dock at a port in Cozumel, Mexico. But while passengers were apparently stranded at sea temporarily, tensions boiled over on the ship leading to an all-out brawl, according to KABC-TV.

The backstory

According to the Washington Post, a crew member aboard the MSC Meraviglia cruise ship began displaying signs of sickness, including coughing, a fever, and an alleged "travel history to a country of interest relating to COVID-19."

The cruise company, however, said medical records clearly showed that the crew member had "common seasonal flu" and that his travel history didn't include coronavirus-struck countries with travel restrictions.

Still, Jamaican authorities would not allow the ship to dock. Then, officials on Grand Cayman also prevented the ship from docking out of an "abundance of caution."

The ship was finally allowed to dock in Cozumel, with Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador saying it would be "inhuman" to not even allow a ship to dock.

The brawl

This was all quite stressful for the passengers on board the ship — first, the threat of potential coronavirus outbreak, as well as uncertainty about whether they'd be allowed to dock anywhere and get off the ship.

On their minds, possibly, was the weekslong quarantine of passengers on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Yokohama, Japan, which had more than 600 confirmed coronavirus cases.

A passenger aboard the MSC Meraviglia said when the ship was denied at Grand Cayman and Jamaica, tensions began to rise, and somehow or another people began fighting. A crew member at one point appeared to even use pepper spray to try to break up the brawl. Watch below:

Again, it was just the flu. All passengers were refunded due to the "disruptive nature" of their experience.

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Aaron Colen

Aaron Colen

Aaron is a former staff writer for TheBlaze. He resides in Denton, Texas, and is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma where he earned his Bachelor of Arts in journalism and a Master of Education in adult and higher education.