Locals chill about Covid ships in port

FIVE sailors and a passenger from another Covid-affected freighter at Fremantle port were moved into 14-day hotel quarantine on Thursday to protect them from their infectious shipmates.

The Chinese bulk carrier MV Darya Krishna moored at Fremantle Port for a medical emergency on Monday, with three of the crew evacuated to Fional Stanley Hospital where they tested positive to Covid-19. 

The transfer led to one of WA’s most serious safety breaches when a lift in the hospital used to take the crew to the intensive care unit malfunctioned and took two unvaccinated hospital staff on two rides before the breach was discovered and they were sent into quarantine. 

Since then six more members of the crew have tested positive to the virus, but they are well enough to stay on board.

Also staying on the ship are five crew who are not considered infectious (though four returned “positive serology” results) who are considered necessary to keep the Darya Krishna safe.

The ship joins the BBC California which is still berthed at C-shed after the bulk of its crew tested positive to Covid. Both ships travelled through virus-ravaged Indonesia before arriving in WA, and premier Mark McGowan was due to raise the issue of bans at National Cabinet on Friday (July 30).

Despite the protocol breach, a quick poll by the Chook showed that Freo residents still mostly trust the government’s handling of the pandemic and were pretty relaxed about having two infected ships on the doorstep.

by SAXON OMA and STEVE GRANT

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