17 Samoan workers who serviced Fesco Askold now in isolation

The cargo ship Fesco Askold with 3 Covid-19 infected crew onboard is now anchored off the coast of American Samoa.

Staff Reporters

APIA SAMOA – 11 NOVEMBER 2020: 17 frontline Samoan officials who serviced the Fesco Askold while it was at Apia’s Matautu port 7 November are now in controlled isolation.

The workers were isolated yesterday after the American Samoa Health authorities confirmed 3 Covid-19 cases from the 17 crew of the cargo ship 24 hours after it left Apia.

The Cyprus registered Fesco Askold sailed from Tahiti to Samoa where it docked for less than 24 hours then sailed to American Samoa.

According to the Samoan government, the 3 Covid-19 confirmed cases was relayed immediately to the Director General of the Ministry of Health – Leausa Samau Dr Take Naseri by American Samoa’s Epidemiologist at the Department of Health – Aifili Tufa through a telephone conversation on Monday night.

The Director General of Health said strict health controls were followed and no-one from the vessel came ashore and said that Samoa remained Covid-19 free.

Having the frontline officials who serviced the vessel under controlled isolation is a precautionary measure and they will be tested over the next five days.

Meanwhile, the Fesco Askold with 3 Covid positive crew of its 17 crew on board, remains anchored off American Samoa and will remain there for at least seven days.

The security gate to the Pago Pago Harbour, American Samoa. Photo: Fili Sagapolutele.

This would allow local authorities to complete their assessment of the situation and come up with a plan to offload and pick up containers.

Talanei news reports that steps have been taken to decontaminate the dock in case of any contamination while the vessel was dockside.

American Samoa’s Covid-19 task force chairman, Iulogologo Joseph Pereira said while two separate tests had been conducted, affirming the positive results for the three crew members, a third battery of tests was being done by the more sensitive and sophisticated ABI7500 Testing Machine at LBJ Medical Center.

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