Two days ago, five crew members on the M/S Amera cruise ship in Bremerhaven, Germany were diagnosed with coronavirus, according to the German newspaper Buten and Binnen. The delta variant has been confirmed in two of these cases. The ship is operated by the Phoenix Reisen company, which stated that the crew members in question did not have any symptoms.
The newspaper stated that the company requires incoming crew members to present a negative coronavirus test before joining the ship. The employee is then quarantined on the ship for three days. A second test is required after the crew member boards the ship.
An employee associated with the operator, who first alerted me to this outbreak and wishes to remain anonymous, explained that the crew is typically vaccinated with the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
Today, the same newspaper reported that the number of positive COVID cases increased to nine. The local health department expects additional virus cases on the ship.
The head of the Bremerhaven health department stated that the “outbreak is dynamic and mainly due to the delta variant. Seven infected people came to Germany by plane. The cases were the n discovered during corona tests on the cruise ship.” The initial contact persons for the outbreak was identified. However, the health authorities were more concerned that the virus in the other two cases was found in crew members who have been on the ship for some time.
The Amera is currently without passengers in Bremerhaven and is currently scheduled to depart on a cruise to Denmark on August 3rd.
This ship is one of many dozens of ships with positive COVID-19 cases aboard it as the cruise industry continues to try to resume cruising during the ongoing pandemic and the emergence of the delta variant.
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Image credit: Top = HenSti – CC BY-SA 4.0 commons / wikimedia; middle -Radio Bremen via Buten and Binnen.