Cruise ship “MS Artania”: Abrupt end because of Corona

B“MS Artania” cruise guests are not particularly welcome in Western Australia. “This ship has to move on immediately,” the head of state, Mark McGowan, scolded on Thursday. But now about 830 passengers of the German cruise ship are expected to go ashore to continue their journey. From there they will be flown back to Germany by charter flights by the end of the weekend. Those who have no symptoms should be escorted directly from the ship to the airport in Perth. According to the operator Phoenix Reisen from Bonn, the health authorities in Australia had detected the novel corona virus in seven passengers on Wednesday. There are five guests and two of the total of 500 crew members.

Till ferry

Most of the passengers on the ship are German. It is currently in front of Fremantle, a port city south of Perth. It was allowed to moor there after there was a medical emergency on board, which is said to have nothing to do with the corona virus. In Australia, however, a hot discussion has started about the admission of cruise ship passengers. The reason was the case of the cruise ship “Ruby Princess”, in which three people initially tested positive for the corona virus. All other passengers had been released from Sydney under the condition that they were quarantined at home. From there they then traveled on to their hometowns, which were spread all over the country.

In this way, the cruise ship had become one of the largest sources of infection for the Sars-CoV-2. 130 fellow travelers were later tested positive for the virus. The government of the State of New South Wales, the border authorities and the central government had blamed each other for the debacle. In Western Australia, Prime Minister McGowan said he did not want another “fiasco” in his state like that in Sydney. The “MS Artania” is not the only ship there that wants to bring its passengers ashore. The “Vasco de Gama” and the “MSC Magnifica” are also waiting to be allowed to moor. Both ships have no proven infections on board.

In Australia, the number of people infected has increased to more than 3,000 in the past few days. According to Prime Minister Scott Morrison, two-thirds of these cases are foreign returns. As a result, his government tightened the quarantine measures on Friday. As of Sunday, all travelers who have to go into quarantine for two weeks are no longer allowed to do so within their own four walls, but are accommodated in hotels and quarantine facilities. The Australian states bear the costs for this.


Seven Corona Falls on a German cruise ship off Australia

An On board a German cruise ship anchored off Australia, at least seven people have contracted the corona virus. The Bonn tour operator Phoenix said it was five passengers and two crew members of the “MS Artania”. None of the infected people are in a critical health condition. All guests should be flown out of Australia on Saturday with specially chartered planes. “We hope that it will work out that way. Talks with the German embassy and the Australian authorities are still ongoing, ”said a Phoenix spokeswoman on Thursday.

According to the company, the ship offers space for 510 crew members and 1200 – mostly German – passengers. The crew had asked the Australian authorities for help because several people had complained of breathing difficulties. As a result, Western Australian officials from the health authority boarded Fremantle on the west coast and examined them.

All passengers should stay in their cabins

The head of state of Western Australia, Mark McGowan, said on Thursday that the ship should leave Australian waters immediately. “His home port is actually in Germany.” If the seven sufferers had to come ashore for treatment, they would be taken to a facility of the defense forces, for example. The Australian government and Germany could then arrange a return flight after treatment.

According to the Phoenix spokeswoman, all passengers were asked to stay in their outside cabins. There the crew would provide them with food and drinks. “The captain informed everyone on board about the situation right from the start. The guests reacted with understanding and behaved sensibly. “

According to Roger Cook, Minister of Health for Western Australia, an elderly man was taken to a hospital aboard the ship for a life-threatening emergency – but it had nothing to do with the corona virus. As a precaution, he would be treated in a vacuum room at Fiona Stanley Hospital. “The ship remains under the captain’s control. We are only on site for medical assistance when needed, ”said Cook.