Honolulu, Hawaii 2020-11-20 07:19:34 –
The Navy confirmed on Thursday that a COVID-19 outbreak occurred on the Pearl Harbor-based guided-missile destroyer USS Michael Murphy, forcing crew members to quarantine and temporarily shut down operations.
NBC News reported Thursday that nearly a quarter of the ship’s 300 crew members were positive.
In a statement, the Navy quarantined infected seafarers who began to test positive on November 4, and all close contacts and unnecessary crew members “with great care” self for two weeks. Segregated.
Navy officials refused to provide accurate numbers because Pentagon policy restricts commanders from reporting infections at the local level, but ships have “clusters of infection.” It was confirmed.
Almost all crew members who tested positive were asymptomatic and were expected to return to work.
“Most of them will get out of quarantine over the weekend,” Cmdr said. Nicole Schwegman, a spokeswoman for Surface Force Pacific.
The ship’s crew is training interrupted by the outbreak, but Murphy has no plans to deploy until next year.
The military shares the cases in the state with the Hawaii Department of Health and is included in the total number of cases in the state. Hawaii officials have agreed to keep these numbers secret. Pentagon officials told DOH that they would end information sharing if state officials discussed military case numbers.
The Department of Health did not immediately respond to requests for information on when the ship’s incident could be included in Oahu’s daily count.
“Approximately a quarter of people on this ship anchored in Pearl Harbor are positive. Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell answered a question at a press conference and the virus spreads quickly. “My heart is directed at the men and women on board the ship.”
It is not the first outbreak in the Pacific Ocean. After a port call in Vietnam in March, the virus began to pass through the USS Theodore Roosevelt aircraft carrier.
In total, 1,156 members of the carrier’s 4,779 seafarers were infected and one died. Some of the ship’s crew eventually landed in Guam, many isolated at the hotel. The ship and its crew then returned to duty.
“I think we learned Roosevelt’s lesson,” Schwegmann said. She said that in the current environment, positive cases are inevitable and early intervention is important.
In the aftermath of Roosevelt’s outbreak, some Hawaii Activists and lawmakers urged the military to suspend training exercises.
Especially the biennial exercise RIMPAC — the world’s largest naval exercise — Scrutinized more than usual Beyond the fear that sailors from all over the world may land in Honolulu and spread the disease. In April, Honolulu city council member Ron Menor issued a resolution calling on the Pacific Fleet to stop the exercise.
RIMPAC 2020 is the Pacific Fleet The largest iteration of the exercise everHowever, in the end, they hosted a significantly reduced event without coastal vacations or amphibious operations and maintained the exercises entirely at sea.
None of the vessels participating in RIMPAC reported an outbreak during the exercise, but two Philippine Navy sailors and members of the Maritime Self-Defense Force tested positive and were quarantined before sailing to Hawaii.
Civil Beat reporter Christina Jedra contributed to this article
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