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Crew members test positive for COVID-19 onboard US cargo ship Maersk Idaho

Crew members test positive for COVID-19 onboard US cargo ship Maersk Idaho
Nicole Brailer Jun 26, 2020

NATIONAL (WAVY) — Officials with the U.S. Flagged cargo ship Maersk Idaho confirmed on Friday that 10 crew members onboard tested positive for COVID-19.

The ship pulled in to Newark, New Jersey on June 19, and one of the crewmembers who displayed pneumonia-like symptoms was admitted to a nearby hospital. The individual has since tested positive for COVID-19 and remains hospitalized in stable condition.

The vessel captain said that the individual joined the ship’s crew in mid-April and has not been ashore since.

Before knowing the individual was positive, the vessel anchored outside of the port in Norfolk. It is not known if any crew went ashore at this time.

The Maersk company coordinated with the U.S. Coast Guard and port authorities to arrange medical testing for the crew.

“At this time, all crewmembers have been tested and nine members have asymptomatic positive results and have been notified accordingly,” said ship officials in a statement released.

“Pursuant to a plan approved by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the U.S.C.G., as well as other state and local authorities, Maersk Line Limited will soon begin evacuation of the current crew to a quarantine facility, sanitizing the vessel, placing a new crew on board, and commencing the port call to conduct cargo operations,” the statement continued.

Prior to pulling into port Norfolk on June 21, the ship was on a transatlantic voyage and various maritime tracking sites show the ship stopped in New York on June 19, Germany on June 10, Netherlands on June 8, and Belgium on June 7. In May, it anchored in Norfolk twice and both Houston and New York once.

It is not known if the ship anchored off the coast or pulled into the port for a port call.