The Majestic Princess cruise ship has docked in Sydney, carrying 800 Covid-positive passengers among the 4,600 passengers and crew. The operator, Princess Cruises, said patients with the virus had been quarantined and every passenger underwent a rapid test within 24 hours of arrival.
Margaret Fitzgerald, president of Carnival Australia, the parent company of the Majestic Princess, said all cases were asymptomatic or moderately asymptomatic and that people had been warned to stay away from public places. guardian. Although people with Covid are not currently required to self-isolate under Australian rules, it is recommended to stay home when they are well.
“We always knew there was a risk that at some point we might see an increase in cases in the community and then on ships as well. It’s been nearly three years, and since then, we as a community have learned a lot and a lot about Covid,” Fitzgerald said. “We’ve learned what works to help mitigate transmission, and we’ve learned how to protect our vulnerable people.” The docking of the ship recalled the arrival of the Ruby Princess in Sydney in March 2020 – at the start of the Australian epidemic – where there were 28 deaths and more than 600 infections. The incident led to the formation of a government investigation committee and collective action against the operator.
The outbreak on the ship follows an increase in the number of cases across Australia over the past week – an expected “fourth wave” – that prompted Queenslanders to require residents to use face masks in health care facilities, at home and on public transport.
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