600 Filipino workers in Italy and Maldives repatriated
About 600 Filipino workers in Italy and Maldives were repatriated and arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport on April 25, 2020. The 336 OFWs from Maldives arrived via a chartered Philippine Airlines flight. They were stranded on the island nation due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The OFWs had to be fetched in Maldives since there is no embassy there. The nearest Philippine Embassy overseeing Maldives is in Dhaka, Bangladesh but there are no direct flights going there. Saturday night also it was busy again for the DFA & partner agencies as they gladly welcomed the arrival of 337 Filipino seafarers of the 'Costa Diadema', 'Costa Luminosa' and 'Costa Smeralda'. The flight was facilitated through the coordination of the PH Consulate General in Milan, the DFA-Office Migrant Workers Affairs and the Costa Cruises Management. All the arriving OFWs were interviewed upon arrival for their contact details and other information, and underwent a rapid antibody test for COVID-19 conducted by personnel in hazmat suits. The health condition of the OFWs were checked in Maldives and also before disembarking the plane at NAIA. No one exhibited COVID-19 symptoms. All the OFWs will undergo mandatory 14-day quarantine Those from Italy were brought to hotels while those from Maldives were brought to the World Trade Center. The DFA also repatriated OFWs from London, Madrid, and Cotê d’Ivoire, Ghana and Sierra Leone in Africa. A total of 610 seafarers working on the 'Queen Mary 2' arrived at NAIA in the afternoon of April 25.
Four crew members hospitalized for coronavirus
Rour of the crew members who remained on board the 'Costa Luminosa' to manage the ship were hospitalized for coronavirus within the last 24 hours. Two of the 49 seafarers who were initially tested negative for the COVID 19 virus, but who were in fact at high risk, having remained in contact with others, were in turn tested positive. Ambulances took them to the Savona hospital. The maritime health authority asked the owner to reduced the number of 120 seafarers to about 80 people, the minimum necessary for the operation of the ship. On April 8, the Indonesians who has disembarked from the vessel last week, were stopped at Fiumicino due to a lacking authorization from their embassy to return home and were been accompanied to Italian healthcare facilities. Meanwhile, sanitation was underway on board and will be completed in the next few days, while the crew remained on board in quarantine, hoping that there were no other emergencies.
122 crew members quarantined on board
After the disembarkation of the 'Costa Luminosa' the ship currently hosts 122 crew members, all in good health. The crew has been placed in single cabins with balconies and the air conditioning has been interrupted. The cabins, bridge and other parts will be sanitized while all areas not necessary for the crew will be closed. The health surveillance started on March 31 and lasts until April 13. There will be daily medical checks. Regarding the emission of fumes, the ship burns low sulfur fuel and the impact was very low because the ship was in reduced operation.Upload News