Delta cases increase on container ship in New Zealand


New Zealand health authorities have confirmed new cases of COVID-19 on board the container ship Mattina, bringing the total number of confirmed cases on the vessel to 15.

Authorities previously reported that the cases are related to the more transmissible Delta variant.

The MV Mattina arrived at the Port of Bluff last Sunday, July 18, with two crew members with symptoms of COVID-19. Tests on all 21 crew members have confirmed further cases.

All crewmembers who have tested positive for the virus will remain in quarantine aboard the vessel, where they will maintain minimal shipboard duties and will not have direct contact with any port personnel.

Three crew members, including the ship’s captain, have tested negative for COVID-19 and have been safely transferred to shore-based facilities under strict infection prevention and control procedures, including the use of full PPE, routinely used during transport.

The captain is quarantined at a facility near the ship so that he can return in the event of an emergency.

AIS vessel tracking data shows that the Marshall Islands-flagged Mettina arrived from Freemantle, Western Australia. The Ministry of Health said the cases are not linked to any in New Zealand.

New Zealand has been successful in combating the spread of COVID-19 within the country by closing its borders since the start of the pandemic, imposing strict lockdown and quarantine protocols, and responding aggressively to cases spread in the community early on. The latest update from the Ministry of Health indicates that there are no cases of COVID-19 in the community and that there are only 19 cases currently in the country, all of which are isolated marine cases.

Source gCaptain

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