Mobile looking to return of cruises by mid-summer

Carnival Glory Cruise ship, Photo Date: December 2014

The Alabama Cruise Terminal in Mobile has been providing COVID-19 vaccinations rather than trips to the western Caribbean during the pandemic, but that could soon change.

Posted: May 2, 2021 6:45 AM

MOBILE, Ala. (AP) — With demand for COVID-19 vaccinations lagging at an immunization clinic set up at the Alabama Cruise Terminal, an official said the site could shut down soon as the cruise industry prepares to restart.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued guidelines recently that would allow companies that meet certain benchmarks to resume operating around mid-July, and officials are hopeful Carnival Cruise Lines can resume its trips to the western Caribbean from Mobile.

The city's cruise terminal near downtown is currently being used as a mass vaccination site by the Mobile County Health Department, but Health Officer Dr. Bert Eichold told WALA-TV he expects the operation to wrap up in the next couple of weeks.

“The mega-clinic site seems to be decreasing in demand, so we will be out of that facility when the cruise industry starts back,” he said. “It was a great site. The city was a great partner. Good use of space.”

More than 22% of the residents of Mobile County are fully vaccinated, according to CDC statistics. But the county, with about 413,000 residents, also has one of the higher levels of community disease transmission in Alabama, according to the state.

The area tourism agency said cruises account for 35,000 hotel nights and $150 million annually, and the more than yearlong shutdown of the industry has taken a chunk out of the local economy.

“It’s been a big blow. Tourism’s never, ever seen what they’ve seen in terms of disaster in the economy, from travel, or the lack of travel,” said David Clark, chief executive of Visit Mobile.

Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson, who has pushed for a resumption of cruising, said he was happy the CDC had provided the industry with a roadmap for resuming business.

“The city of Mobile stands ready for the return of Carnival. All our full-time, part-time and contracted employees who interact with passengers on cruise days have already been vaccinated for COVID-19. Our team is prepared to welcome back cruisers safely and with enthusiasm," he said in a statement.

Alabama is last in the nation in the rate of COVID-19 vaccinations. More than 525,000 people have tested positive for the new coronavirus that causes the illness, and more than 10,800 have died.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 314710

Reported Deaths: 7254
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21646260
Hinds20369416
Harrison17949309
Rankin13643278
Jackson13450246
Madison10113217
Lee9986174
Jones8384163
Forrest7689152
Lauderdale7198240
Lowndes6403148
Lamar623686
Lafayette6203119
Washington5341134
Bolivar4802132
Oktibbeha462998
Panola4596107
Pearl River4519146
Marshall4450103
Warren4393121
Pontotoc420872
Monroe4115133
Union411176
Neshoba4031176
Lincoln3969110
Hancock379586
Leflore3498125
Sunflower336290
Tate334784
Pike3327105
Scott316274
Alcorn313368
Yazoo311770
Itawamba300577
Copiah297465
Coahoma295579
Simpson295388
Tippah288768
Adams286982
Prentiss280060
Marion269380
Leake268473
Wayne262841
Grenada261587
Covington259881
George248148
Newton246862
Winston227581
Tishomingo227067
Jasper221148
Attala214473
Chickasaw208057
Holmes189174
Clay185554
Stone182833
Tallahatchie178941
Clarke178080
Calhoun170932
Yalobusha164638
Smith162534
Walthall134245
Greene130633
Lawrence128724
Montgomery127142
Noxubee126734
Perry126338
Amite123142
Carroll121829
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis107133
Tunica105726
Claiborne102430
Benton100025
Humphreys96733
Kemper95828
Franklin83923
Quitman81116
Choctaw76418
Wilkinson67531
Jefferson65728
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 537813

Reported Deaths: 11024
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson791691529
Mobile41177808
Madison35002507
Tuscaloosa25871454
Shelby25076249
Montgomery24549591
Baldwin21290309
Lee15946171
Calhoun14556319
Morgan14364280
Etowah13890353
Marshall12262223
Houston10602282
Elmore10115206
Limestone10031151
St. Clair9890245
Cullman9730194
Lauderdale9449243
DeKalb8853188
Talladega8325176
Walker7259277
Autauga6971108
Jackson6830112
Blount6750139
Colbert6317134
Coffee5546119
Dale4869113
Russell444338
Chilton4343113
Franklin426282
Covington4138118
Tallapoosa4040152
Escambia394577
Chambers3581123
Dallas3564153
Clarke351361
Marion3137101
Pike311977
Lawrence302298
Winston275673
Bibb263064
Geneva252577
Marengo249664
Pickens234862
Barbour231956
Hale223677
Butler217869
Fayette212462
Henry189644
Cherokee184345
Randolph182042
Monroe178140
Washington167639
Macon160750
Clay156957
Crenshaw153357
Cleburne149241
Lamar143035
Lowndes139653
Wilcox127430
Bullock123041
Conecuh110629
Coosa108928
Perry107826
Sumter104932
Greene92634
Choctaw61024
Out of AL00
Unassigned00
Tupelo
Clear
50° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 48°
Feels Like: 50°
Columbus
Clear
52° wxIcon
Hi: 81° Lo: 50°
Feels Like: 52°
Oxford
Clear
46° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 45°
Feels Like: 46°
Starkville
Clear
45° wxIcon
Hi: 80° Lo: 47°
Feels Like: 45°
High pressure will continue to dominate our weather forecast for this weekend. This will keep our area filled with plenty of sunshine. However, there will be some changes next week in our weahter forecast as low pressure brings back some chances for showers and thunderstorms.
WTVA Radar
WTVA Temperatures
WTVA Severe Weather