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14 evacuees from Diamond Princess cruise ship return to U.S. soil with coronavirus

3 months 2 weeks 1 day ago Monday, February 17 2020 Feb 17, 2020 February 17, 2020 9:30 AM February 17, 2020 in News
Source: WBRZ
Diamond Princess Cruise Ship Photo: Kim Kyung Hoon

Fourteen people who were evacuated from the Diamond Princess cruise ship and flown back to the United Sates tested positive for novel coronavirus.

According to CNN, the passengers are among the more than 300 people who were removed from the ship, which remains docked off the Japanese port city of Yokohoama.

U.S. didn't know the passengers were diagnosed with the virus until after the evacuation process. 

The passengers had been tested two or three days before the evacuation flights. 

The U.S. Departments of State and Health and Human Services said, "After consultation with HHS officials, including experts from the HHS Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response, the State Department made the decision to allow the 14 individuals, who were in isolation, separated from other passengers, and continued to be asymptomatic, to remain on the aircraft to complete the evacuation process."

One charter flight carrying evacuated Americans arrived at Travis Air Force Base near Fairfield, California, around 11:28 p.m. local time Sunday. A second arrived at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in San Antonio, Texas at 3:56 a.m. local time Monday.

After the flights land, any passengers that developed symptoms on the flights and those who had already tested positive will be transported to "an appropriate location for continued isolation and care."

The remaining passengers will remain under quarantine for 14 days.

Passengers arriving to Travis Air Force Base will be housed in the same facility as evacuees who arrived from Wuhan earlier this month, a spokesperson for the base told CNN. New evacuees will be kept in a separate area of the Westwind Inn on the base, the spokesperson said.

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