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No corona virus on cruise ship docking Tauranga

Photo: File.

The Voyager of the Seas cruise ship has docked in Tauranga this morning after being diverted from Vanuatu.

The diversion is due to seven people on board falling ill. But the Ministry of Health believes there is no risk of COVID-19 on the vessel.

“We are aware that there are seven people on board the cruise ship Voyager of the Seas due to dock in Tauranga tomorrow that are ill with typical influenza or gastroenteritis,” says a written statement issued by the ministry.

“Our current assessment is that there is no risk from COVID-19”.

The Voyager of the Seas cruise ship has a maximum capacity of 4369 passengers and crew.

Bay of Plenty chief executive Kristin Dunne says cruise ships docking in Tauranga are visiting under strict health and safety protocols, and host communities should feel at ease about welcoming them as always.

“Both Toi Te Ora Public Health Unit and the Ministry of Health have determined that there is no risk of COVID-19 (coronavirus) on board the vessel.

“I would like to reassure the community that the cruise industry has extensive experience and protocols for managing the health and wellbeing of their guests, and the host communities."

She says for many aboard the Voyager of the Seas this cruise is a holiday of a lifetime and through no fault of their own the ship has had to divert.

“Their time in our care could leave a lasting positive impression and it is my hope that we all rally to extend the manaakitanga we are known for.”

“I would like to reassure the community that the cruise industry has extensive experience and protocols for managing the health and wellbeing of their guests, and the host communities.”

Tourism Bay of Plenty reiterates a statement from February 21 confirming that the majority of more than 270 cruise ships globally continue to sail unaffected, including within New Zealand – but with strict precautions in place.

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5 Comments
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Testing?

Posted on 05-03-2020 08:59 | By Maryfaith

How does the ministry know it is not Covid-19 until they get a chance to test - which takes days! In the meantime passengers are being allowed to circulate among the local population! The ministry appear to be a bunch of clowns the way this outbreak is being mishandled! Asking people to ’self isolate’ is naive and laughable!

MK

Posted on 02-03-2020 22:49 | By Mary Knight

I agree with Lyrch. Passengers on board any cruise ship docking in Tauranga at this time should be confined within the ship. Local residents, bus drivers & taxi drivers should not be put at any risk of possible infection.

She'll be right...

Posted on 02-03-2020 15:49 | By morepork

There’s loads of lovely money coming in and the people getting it can afford to isolate themselves, (the Islands, luxury resorts, Bahamas, etc.) until the threat is passed, unlike most of us. There definitely SHOULD be more transparency as to the measures being taken and what the plan is if there is a sudden outbreak here, caused by tourist contamination. Of course, we’d like to think every visitor is OK, but just wishing it won’t make it so. We STILL don’t have enough information about this virus to make informed, sensible decisions about it. Until we do, it would be wise to simply err on the side of caution and take some more difficult decisions on isolation and testing.

No testing!?

Posted on 02-03-2020 10:22 | By Lyrch

If the New Zealand government, Toi Te Ora Public Health Unit and the Ministry of Health were serious about the potential spread of covid-19 virus then shouldn’t they be testing all souls aboard any cruise ship or for that matter all in coming flights, in-light of the recent worldwide spread? At what monetary expense are the potential lives of the New Zealand people worth? This country has a small window of grace to stop or minimize the spread of this new virus. This Coronavirus has a significant Incubation period before the first symptoms appear, so don’t you think the New Zealand government should be proactive and to err on the side of caution before it’s to late?

A couple of questions for Tourism BOP

Posted on 02-03-2020 09:39 | By

What are the strict health and safety protocols? If after having reassured the community the virus is found to have spread that way will Tourism BOP step up to help those infected?