Strict vigil at seaports against coronavirus

Photo: IANS

Chennai: Strict vigil is being maintained at seaports in Tamil Nadu and Puducherry against suspected coronavirus-infected ship crew, said a senior official of Chennai Port Trust.

“We collect the pre-arrival health data of the crew from all the ships even before they berth. The details include the body temperature of the crew,” S. Senthilnathan, Port Health Officer, told IANS.

Data about crew joining the ship midway will also be collected.

According to him, special focus is on ships coming from Chinese ports with or without Chinese crew; ship though it has not called on a Chinese port but has one or more Chinese crew and one or more crew who are not Chinese, but boarded the ship at a Chinese port.

Senthilnathan said once a ship with the above ‘China connection’ is berthed, the health condition of the crew will be monitored continuously, Senthilnathan said.

He said the coronavirus has an incubation period of 14 days.

If a crew has to be isolated then he/she will be sent to the Rajiv Gandhi Government Hospital here.

Senthilnathan said at an average 20 cargo ships from China call on Chennai and Kamarajar port here.

Each ship will have about 25 crew members, a total of 400 crew per month. The average number of crew who would join the ships in a China port will be only about 10-20, he said.

He said ships calling on Chennai, Kamarajar and Nagapattinam ports in Tamil Nadu and the Karaikal port in Puducherry are monitored from here.

As of now no coronavirus affected ship crew was found at these ports.


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