On March 6, US Vice President Mike Pence announced that 21 people on board the cruise ship which is currently stranded off the coast of San Francisco have tested positive for the coronavirus. According to reports, the 21 people consist of 19 crew members and two passengers. US President Donald Trump said he wants them to stay quarantined onboard.
The ship was denied permission to dock after it was discovered that two of the cruise ship's previous passengers had tested positive and one among them has even died. According to reported, in a press conference, Mike Pence said that 46 people onboard the Grand Princess have been tested.
Pence further added that the 3,400 passengers aboard the Grand Princess and its crew will be taken to a non-commercial port and everyone will then be tested there. As per sources, US President Donald Trump told a reporter after touring the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta said that he would rather let the people stay on the ship.
He also added that while that was his personal opinion, he would defer the handling of the decision to Vice President Mike Pence who was recently given the responsibility of coordinating the United States's response to the rapidly spreading coronavirus.
In an earlier incident, passengers aboard the Diamond Princess were quarantined on a cruise ship off the coast of Japan after passengers and crew tested positive for the coronavirus. The decision to quarantine the passengers and crew onboard the ship by the Japanese authorities led to one of the world's biggest outbreaks of coronavirus outside mainland China at that time.
696 people on board the Diamond Princess had ended up contracting the coronavirus in the duration of the quarantine and 6 people have died. The fact spreading coronavirus that began in Wuhan China has spread to several countries across the globe. The virus has been officially named COVID-19 by the world health organisation and has infected 102,238 people and killed 3,497 people worldwide.