Coronavirus US live updates: Coast Guard vessel returns to base due to COVID-19 outbreak

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Coronavirus US live updates: Coast Guard vessel returns to base due to COVID-19 outbreak
Coronavirus US live updates: Coast Guard vessel returns to base due to COVID-19 outbreak

A U.S. Coast Guard vessel on a counter-narcotics patrol was forced to return to its base in California on Wednesday, after 11 crew members tested positive for COVID-19.

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Stratton set out from its homeport in Alameda on Oct. 28 to begin a counter-narcotics patrol in the Eastern Pacific. Prior to departure, the crew was required to self-quarantine and test negative for COVID-19 twice, according to a press release from the Coast Guard.

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Last week, several crew members began to develop mild COVID-19 symptoms and were administered rapid testing kits on board. All affected personnel and their close contacts were identified and quarantined, according to the press release.

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Coast Guard medical staff conducted testing of the ship’s entire crew, who then went into quarantine. The infected crew members are receiving medical care, according to the press release.

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“The crew’s health and safety is my highest priority,” Stratton’s commanding officer, Capt. Bob Little, said in a statement Wednesday. “Stratton has a highly resilient crew, always dedicated to the mission. Our mission today is to get healthy so we can continue our service to the nation.”

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