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‘Cruise to nowhere’ returns to port as passenger tests positive for Covid-19

Bangkok Desk, Dec 9 (efe-epa).- A traveler infected with Covid-19 during a “cruise to nowhere” to and from Singapore has forced an early return to port, the cruise company reported Wednesday.

At the beginning of November, the city-state announced a pilot program of cruises of between three and four days with strict sanitary measures and at 50 percent of the ship’s capacity.

The Royal Caribbean ship Quantum of the Seas set sail on Monday for a four-day voyage, but was forced to return to port early after a passenger tested positive for the virus “after checking in” with the medical team on board, the company said.

“We identified and isolated all guests and crew who had close contact with this guest, and each of those individuals have subsequently tested negative for the virus,” Royal Caribbean said in a statement Wednesday.

The ship was returning to port and once docked, all passengers will be able to disembark “after a review of contact tracing is completed.”

At the moment, the trips are limited only to Singaporeans or residents in the country, who must take a Covid-19 test before boarding.

Travelers must also pass temperature controls prior to boarding and upon leaving the ship, where strict controls and social distancing measures have been implemented to prevent the spread of the virus.

“That we were able to quickly identify this single case and take immediate action is a sign that the system is working as it was designed to do,” said the company, which remains in contact with Singaporean authorities.

Although some countries have begun to allow cruises, with limitations, the sector is still far from resuming pre-pandemic activity.

Journeys “to nowhere” have also been adopted by airlines to try to stay afloat during the economic crisis generated by the pandemic. EFE-EPA

nc/tw

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