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Gov. DeSantis says Florida can't take sick cruise ship passengers

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (WPEC) – The Holland America cruise ship with four dead passengers and more patients infected with the coronavirus is cleared to cross the Panama Canal, according to the Sun-Sentinel.

But whether it reaches Florida, remains to be seen. Gov. DeSantis told Fox News, “We cannot afford to have people who are not even Floridians dumped into South Florida using up those valuable resources," said DeSantis, according to the Sun-Sentinel. “We view this as a big, big problem and we don’t want to see people dumped in southern Florida right now.”

The Panama Canal Authority backtracked from a statement it'd made before saying no one would be allowed passage through the canal if someone was infected with the virus.

In a statement, the canal authority says it "supports all efforts being made to ensure an expedited return home for cruise passengers and crew on Holland America's Zaandaam," according to the report.

Healthy passengers are being let off the cruise ship at the Panama Canal and transferring to Holland America's Rotterdam.

No date has been made public as to when the Zaandaam can cross the canal to get to the Eastern United States.