Shannen Findlay

Travel Trouble

Shock death on virus cruise ship as three liners announced as infected

Shock death on virus cruise ship as three liners announced as infected

Four thousand passengers have fled the Royal Carribean’s Anthem of the Seas after it docked at the New Jersey port city of Bayonne, following grave reports of Chinese nationals falling ill while aboard the ship. 

Around two dozen Chinese passengers were isolated on board, but only four have been tested and then taken to hospital after thousands of other passengers had quickly left the ship.

The news of the death of a male crew member who was found deceased on the Anthem was followed with a report by authorities who believed his death had not been from the coronavirus.

However NBC4NY reported they were treating it with “an abundance of caution” as they waited for post mortem results. 

“The crew member, a Filipino national, was found in an engine room last weekend,” the publication said, citing two sources.

“His body was kept in a refrigerated compartment until the ship docked in New Jersey.”

Three cruise ships that have been confirmed with coronavirus infected passengers who are currently sailing about the seas or docked have been forbidden to let passengers to disembark. 

The Royal Caribbean company has moved to bar embarkation on any of its ships by holders of passports from China, Hong Kong or Macau.

The luxury liner Diamond Princess is stranded in Yokohama, Japan with 64 coronavirus cases, with at least five Australians and twelve Americans, after Japan’s health ministry confirmed the number had jumped up another three.

Around 276 people of the 3700 on board are infected.

While the quarantined ship’s are effectively keeping infected outsiders away from the public, it is housing the biggest known virus cluster outside of China and anxious passengers have been given no release date. 

One passenger wrote on Twitter “I keep hearing painful coughs from a foreigner in a nearby room”.

In Hong Kong, 3,600 people are on day three of being confined aboard the World Dream luxury liner, where eight former passengers have tested positive for the virus.

So far, 35 crew members and nine passengers who had earlier reported fever or respiratory symptoms have tested negative for deadly coronavirus, the South China Morning Post reported.

Hong Kong paramedics, dressed head to toe in protective gear, loaded a person completely sealed in plastic into an ambulance parked alongside the World Dream last week. 

To reduce passenger-to-passenger contact, on-board entertainment including film screenings and mahjong games have been effectively cancelled. 

If all 1800 crew test negative for the virus, ship officials hope to be able to disembark everyone off the ship by Tuesday.

However, some have guessed that untested passengers might be stuck on the ship for longer.

The ship left Hong Kong a week ago for a cruise to Taiwan, but was turned back by Taiwanese authorities.

Holland America’s Westerdam was denied a port call by the American State Department at the US territory of Guam in the western Pacific after it reported suspected virus patients.

Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said foreign passengers won’t be allowed into Japan.

The ship, with more than 2,000 people, was near Okinawa and was seeking another port.

The coronavirus, first identified in Wuhan, China, has spread worldwide with 37,515 confirmed cases and 813 deaths as of Sunday afternoon, Sydney time.

Most cases are in mainland China. Common signs of infection include fever, cough, shortness of breath and breathing difficulties.