Union says authorities must board cruise ships to assist workers

Cheryl Sanders
March 26, 2020

It had previously been found in a study by the New England Journal of Medicine that coronavirus can survive for 3 hours in aerosols (liquid droplets in the air, from coughs or sneezes), 4 hours on copper, 24 hours on cardboard, and 2-3 days on plastic and stainless steel.

"Although these data cannot be used to determine whether transmission occurred from contaminated surfaces, further study of fomite transmission (objects that can carry infection) of SARS-CoV-2 aboard cruise ships is warranted", the CDC authors wrote.

"More than 800 cases of laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases occurred during outbreaks on three cruise ship voyages, and cases linked to several additional cruises have been reported across the United States".

No passenger will be allowed off cruise ships in Sydney until new protocols, which are still being negotiated with the federal government, are signed, Australia's New South Wales state premier Gladys Berejiklian told reporters on Thursday.

"Say it with me: *viral RNA doesn't necessarily mean live virus was present, *" Smith said on Twitter.

Artania, which is now anchored off the west of Perth, is carrying 800 guests and 500 crew members.

However, Dr Derek Gatherer, an infectious disease specialist at Lancaster University, is not convinced the coronavirus can stay on surfaces for 17 days.

Federal border authorities have blamed NSW Health for the Ruby Princess cruise ship fiasco, arguing the department gave the key "green light" for disembarkation.

"COVID-19 on cruise ships poses a risk for rapid spread of disease, causing outbreaks in a vulnerable population, and aggressive efforts are required to contain spread", the report said.

The furore over the Ruby Princess follows the Australian government being forced to rescue citizens off the Diamond Princess in Japan, with one Perth man later dying from the virus. The quarantine lasted almost a month. Well, since then, members of crew and passengers alike have been allowed to disembark from the besieged cruise ship, but according to Bloomberg and CNBC, one guest still lingers. Nine people from the ship have died.

Meanwhile, a passenger who walked off the Ruby Princess vessel without any health checks or warnings by authorities is now in intensive care unit after testing positive to the virus.

Two cruise ships were ordered to leave Australian waters on Thursday, after a liner that docked in Sydney Harbour last week became the primary source of infection for the country's coronavirus outbreak. "All persons should defer all cruise travel worldwide during the Covid-19 pandemic".

Other reports by iNewsToday