Another shipwreck? Many people on Antarctica cruise ship have COVID-19

WION Web Team
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia Published: Apr 08, 2020, 08:32 AM(IST)

Coronavirus: Death lurks at sea Photograph:( AFP )

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Of 217 people tested on the ship, the Greg Mortimer, 128 were positive for the virus that causes the COVID-2019 disease and 89 tested negative.

As many as 60 per cent of the people from Australia, Europe and the United States on board a cruise ship off the coast of Uruguay have tested positive for the novel coronavirus.

Of 217 people tested on the ship, the Greg Mortimer, 128 were positive for the virus that causes the COVID-2019 disease and 89 tested negative.

The infected people are all asymptomatic, said Aurora Expeditions, the Australian operator of the Greg Mortimer ship that is working to disembark the crew and passengers and arrange flights to their home countries.
 
The vessel departed on March 15 on a voyage to Antarctica and South Georgia that was titled 'In Shackleton's Footsteps' -- a reference to the polar explorer who led British expeditions to the region and died there in 1922.

Six people were earlier evacuated from the ship. They are in a stable condition and are being treated in Montevideo.

The passengers, once embarked, would undergo a 14-day quarantine on arrival at a facility in Melbourne.

US and European passengers who tested negative will be able to depart later in the week, following a second test and permission from the Uruguayan government.

The cost per passenger is about $9,300 and the cruise ship operator has asked the Australian government for help with expenses.

DEATH LURKS AT SEA

In a separate case, a cruise ship anchored in Santos, on the coast of Brazil's Sao Paulo state, had its quarantine extended until at least April 19.

Doctors found 40 new suspected cases of the coronavirus, aboard the Costa Fascinosa vessel, which is owned by Costa Cruises. Hundreds of people are on the ship. 

Also read | Coronavirus-stricken cruise ships allowed to dock in Florida

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