Coronaviru­s: ‘love­boat’ meals in cabin

Pretoria News Weekend - - FRONT PAGE - THE quar­an­tined Di­a­mond Princess cruise ship in Yoko­hama, near Ja­pan. | AP

PAS­SEN­GERS quar­an­tined on the Di­a­mond Princess “love­boat” had a Valen­tine’s spe­cial meal pre­pared yes­ter­day, but they still had to eat it in their cab­ins.

Ac­cord­ing to me­dia re­ports, the thou­sands of pas­sen­gers, who are stuck on the ship off the coast of Ja­pan be­cause of the coronaviru­s, are bored and rest­less.

They posted pho­tos of their meals, and shared en­cour­ag­ing mes­sages, but many have had enough of be­ing stuck in limbo, and are also con­cerned about the risk of be­ing con­tam­i­nated.

Guests have re­mained largely con­fined to their cab­ins, but mem­bers of staff have more con­tact with one another as they eat to­gether and share cab­ins due to space re­stric­tions on their deck. Last week, 10 peo­ple on board were found to be car­ry­ing the virus and by yes­ter­day 218 pas­sen­gers and crew had shown pos­i­tive re­sults.

There have been mixed re­ac­tions to the de­ci­sion by Ja­panese au­thor­i­ties to keep ev­ery­one at sea and on board, be­cause of the risk of the spread of the dis­ease in such con­fined quar­ters.

At the same time, the MS Wes­ter­dam – which has no re­ported cases on board – has been turned away by five places in Asia in re­cent days, un­til it docked in Cam­bo­dia and its 2 200 pas­sen­gers and crew could dis­em­bark.

| See pages 2 and 7.

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