Travel Trouble

“Super spreader” infects 24 guests with coronavirus at 50th birthday party

“Super spreader” infects 24 guests with coronavirus at 50th birthday party

After guests enjoyed a lavish 50th birthday at a restaurant in Noosa, a “super spreader” has infected 24 people with coronavirus.

Dozens of attendees were diagnosed with COVID-19 and are now in isolation.

The restaurant, Sails, has temporarily closed.

Sunshine Coast public health physician Roscoe Taylor said that the staff at Sails Restaurant are also believed to have contracted coronavirus as a result of the birthday party.

“The number of cases from the private birthday function is continuing to be assessed as new cases come to light who have actually travelled back to their home state or from other parts of Queensland,” Dr Taylor said to The Courier Mail.

“In the Sunshine Coast area, we have a small number of guests who were at the event, and also, these four staff. It’s a bit of a moving tally.”

“We are advising those patrons to be mindful of the symptoms of coronavirus and to seek medical advice should they develop them,” Dr Taylor said.

With about 60 people attending the restaurant on the night of the party and another 90 the following night, Dr Taylor has said that the risk of coronavirus is “not zero, probably very low”.

“Staff were practising very good hand hygiene to ensure that all the infection control practices that a restaurant can do were in place,” he said.

“The menus were paper disposable ones. There were no concerns either about the food handling hygiene.”

Dr Taylor also said that at the time of the March 14 party, there were no national restrictions on public gatherings.

“They were following what they believed to be the advice at the time,” Dr Taylor said.

“At the time of the party, there were no restrictions for the mandatory two weeks’ isolation for certain travellers coming back from overseas and secondly, the national requirement regarding gatherings wasn’t in place.”