Australian police searched and confiscated Thursday the black box of the Ruby Princess cruise ship, the country’s largest source of coronavirus infections, to clarify why it landed some 2,700 passengers in Sydney on March 19.
Detectives in charge of the registry also questioned the captain and part of the crew of this cruise ship that is docked in Port Kembla, about one hundred kilometers south of Sydney, last night, according to a statement by the New South Wales State Police (NSW).
NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller announced last Sunday that he was launching a criminal investigation to determine if biosecurity laws were violated by allowing the disembarkation of Ruby Princess passengers, despite the fact that the Australian government had days before the entry of these cruises is prohibited.
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Of the more than 6,000 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the country, which include 51 deaths, more than 600 infections and 21 deaths (15 passengers) have been linked to the cruise, whose passengers traveled without passing through any quarantine to various cities and that It has become the largest source of contagion in the oceanic country.
In addition, this Bermuda-registered ship owned by the multinational Carnival – the world’s largest cruise operator – carries on board more than 1,000 crew members and some 50 nationalities, of whom the vast majority want to stay within the ship.
“They feel safe on the ship and I think it is a good solution,” Fuller told the media on Thursday, referring to staff at the Ruby Princess, who will remain in Port Kembla for about ten days.
Among the crew there are 18 confirmed cases of COVID-19, while about 200 have symptoms.
The Australian press recently revealed that a crew member made a call to the emergency line a day before the Ruby Princess disembarked to seek medical attention from two passengers.
He also knows that a paramedic on the ship had expressed his concern about the potential contagion among the passengers, so they contacted the New South Wales Maritime Police.
Meanwhile, the Australian Border Authority and the government of the state of New South Wales hold each other responsible for having made the decision to give the green light to the landing.