Crew Onboard Cargo Vessel Test COVID Positive


Twenty of the 22 crew members on board a cargo ship berthed at a WA port have tested positive for coronavirus, health authorities have confirmed, reports

Crew members test positive

The MV Ken Hou ship docked at Fremantle Port late Monday, with several crew members reportedly showing symptoms of the virus. All crew members were tested on board and 20 of them have returned a positive result.

Premier Mark McGowan said this wasn’t the first time WA had dealt with positive cases from overseas cargo vessels and ideally the positive cases’ treatment will be handled on board, as opposed to bringing them into the community for hospital treatment.

It all depends upon health advice and the condition of the crew, whether they can isolate on-board,” Mr McGowan said. “We’ve had some experience with these ships before, we’ve had at least five, six, seven maybe over the course of the last 18 months with this issue.”

Safe protocols in place

Mr McGowan said authorities will continue to manage the ship in accordance with “the very safest of protocols we can possibly put in place“. Prior to arriving in Australian waters, the ship was last docked in Thailand on August 7.

WA Police Commissioner Chris Dawson has announced he will temporarily step down from his policing responsibilities in order to fully concentrate on his newly appointed position as the state’s Vaccine Commander.

This new role is on top of his existing role as the State Emergency Coordinator and will have him overseeing the state’s vaccine rollout, working alongside the Chief Health Officer.
Mr McGowan told 6PR the vaccination program is a key priority for the state government, and he hopes Commissioner Dawson’s appointment will help accelerate the number of people being fully immunised.

Dedicated leadership will help drive the program forward, putting WA in the best position to complete the rollout with innovative and fit-for-purpose strategies, unique for WA,” he told 6PR.

WA Police Deputy Police Commissioner Col Blanch will step in to temporarily oversee Commissioner Dawson’s policing responsibilities until at least early next year.

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