CDC Director Redfield overruled, U.S. cruise ships will sail again Nov. 1, reports

Redfield had sought to keep the ban imposed until February of 2021.

Updated: October 1, 2020 - 6:06pm

CDC Director Robert Redfield has been overruled in his request to extend the U.S. ban on cruise ships for another four months, with White House officials declaring that the ban would be lifted on Nov. 1 of this year, according to news reports.

The CDC's original no-sail order, issued in mid-March, then extended in mid-April, was set to expire Oct. 30, barring an extension. 

The reports describe Redfield's request in a recent White House coronavirus task force meeting that the ban be extended until February of 2021, with the public health official reportedly concerned that COVID-19 could spread quickly within the close confines on cruise ships.

But White House officials allegedly decided that an extension of that length was not necessary, instead determining that the order would expire after Halloween, at the end of this month. 

The government is hoping that cruise lines — a multi-billion-dollar industry — can demonstrate that "ships can sail in a safe and responsible manner and that the companies assume the burden of dealing with any possible outbreaks," a White House official told Axios this week.

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