21 passengers test positive for coronavirus on board Grand Princess cruise


US Vice President Mike Pence said on Friday March 6th, that the Princess Cruises’ Grand Princess cruise ship off the coast of California will dock this weekend in a “non-commercial port,” and that all passengers and crew will be tested for the coronavirus.

Speaking at the White House on Friday evening, Pence said that 46 people aboard the ship had been swabbed. Of those, 21 tested positive for the virus, he said, 24 were negative and one of the tests was inconclusive. Pence said that of the 21 who tested positive, 19 were crew members and two were passengers. 

“It’s very likely that the crew was exposed on two different outings,” Pence said. “And we know the coronavirus manifested among the previous passengers.” 

The vice president said that crew members would likely be quarantined on the ship. 

“We will be testing everyone on the ship,” Pence said.  

In an announcement late Friday afternoon local time, Grand Princess’ captain shared the test results with the people on board over the loudspeaker.

In a video obtained by USA TODAY, he can be heard saying the people infected on board “will continue to stay quarantined in their staterooms,” until they can be transferred to hospitals on shore. 

The captain also said the California Department of Public Health requested all guests continue to stay in their rooms.

In an update issued after Pence’s Friday announcement, Princess Cruises said the “ship’s doctor is in the process of informing the guests and crew of their individual results. All guests and affected crew will remain isolated in their rooms.”

It remains unclear exactly when and where the ship will dock, and Princess Cruises said it is “awaiting official specific plans for future positioning of the ship from relevant authorities.”  

More than 3,500 people were waiting for news of the test results as more cases connected to the ship came to light. 

Source: USA Today

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