Cargo ship COVID-19 quarantine numbers jump
THE two COVID-19 positive crew members removed from a cargo ship anchored off Townsville are in a stable condition after being transferred to Townsville University Hospital over the weekend.
The crew from the Globe Electra bulk carrier were transported ashore by water police vessel Brett Irwin on Friday night, hours after a federal government source said they would remain on board unless they needed hospitalisation.
Emergency services dressed in hazmat suits were seen transferring the crew members into an ambulance about midnight.
According to a Queensland Health spokesman, the crew members were admitted and transferred under strict infection-control protocols and admitted to a stand-alone ward with negative pressure rooms.
"All staff working in this ward are trained in the correct infection-control requirements for treating patients with COVID-19," the spokesman said.
They are being monitored daily by the Townsville Public Health Unit and will undergo further COVID-19 testing on board the ship.
The spokesman said the ship is now operating under a management plan which includes health monitoring and additional cleaning.
The Townsville Bulletin understands the ship had picked up 10 crew members from Manila, the Philippines capital, where the two men are believed to have been infected.
It comes as Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said on Saturday authorities were monitoring the rest of the Globe Electra's crew.
"We have very strong measures in place," she said.
"I want to reassure the community that both Maritime Safety and Queensland Health are working collaboratively … to make sure that the ship is absolutely being monitored."
The cargo ship was on its way to the Abbot Point coal port, northwest of Bowen, when the two men were diagnosed.
The Bulletin also understands the number of persons quarantined at Hotel Grand Chancellor in Townsville has jumped from 66 people to 83 people. The Queensland Health spokesman did not refute the claims.
The spokesman said hotel quarantine numbers across the state are expected to fluctuate as people allowed to enter Queensland arrive from overseas or declared COVID-19 hot spots.
"Anyone arriving in Queensland that has been overseas or in a COVID-19 hotspot in the last 14 days and is allowed to enter must quarantine in government arranged accommodation for 14 days, unless they have received an exemption," the spokesman said.
"Government arranged accommodation for people required to quarantine is organised on an as needs basis."