(USA TODAY) -- Citing live flies, dried food waste and even a "roach nymph,"
inspectors for the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have given
the 2,056-passenger Carnival Fascination a failing health grade.
In a report made public this week, inspectors from the CDC's Vessel
Sanitation Program scored the Fascination at 84. Ships docking at U.S. ports
receive surprise inspections twice a year and are graded on a 100-point scale.
Anything below 86 is considered failing.
The inspection of the Fascination on Feb. 21 came just 11 days after an
engine room fire on Carnival Triumph left that ship disabled
at sea for five days, with passengers having to endure a lack of basic
services including working toilets.
The inspectors found a number of violations on the Fascination including not
enough chlorination at the ship's water park, salad bar items not protected by a
sneeze shield and not enough lighting for cleaning in several food-related
And then there were the flies.
"At the hamburger grill, there was a large fly around the uncovered raw
hamburger patties. The area was open during the inspection," according to the
Under one kitchen counter where dried food waste was discovered, "It appeared
that the food waste was leaking through the sealant. A small fly was in this
compartment," an inspector writes.
Elsewhere, four to six small flies and a "roach nymph" - an immature form of
cockroach - was found around the deck drain below the room service juice
Carnival spokesman Vance Gulliksen tells USA TODAY that a Carnival ship
failing a CDC inspection is a rare occurrence.
"In the past five years, no Carnival ship has failed a U.S.P.H (U.S. Public
Health) inspection and the fleet's average score during that time period is 97.
The average over 20 inspections already conducted in 2013 is 97.2," Gulliksen
cleanest cruise ship? Carnival Splendor wins kudos
He says in response to the CDC report, "corrective action was taken
immediately, with several issues being resolved during the inspection and all
issues resolved within 24 hours of the inspection."
Gulliksen adds that Carnival has requested a re-inspection of the ship "as
soon as possible."
This item was written by Fran Golden, a cruise expert and Trip Coach for
Budget Travel magazine. Golden is serving as Guest Editor of The Cruise
Log while USA TODAY Cruise Editor Gene Sloan is away.
Fran Golden, Special for USA TODAY