Coronavirus: 3,500 Grand Princess passengers came to know 21 cases on board only when Pence announced on TV
At the White House press conference on Friday, March 6, Mike Pence revealed that 46 people on board were swabbed and 21 of them tested positive
Passengers aboard the Grand Princess cruise ship were in for a horrific shock during Mike Pence's press conference when they learned that 19 crew members and two tourists had tested positive for COVID-19 when Pence announced the cases at his press conference.
At the White House press conference on Friday, March 6, Pence revealed that 46 people on board were swabbed and 21 of them tested positive. This update comes amid news of two more deaths in the US on Friday night, both in Florida, which took the US death toll to 17.
The ship was already being considered as a breeding ground for the virus after 10 cases were linked with a previous trip, including one death. As a result, the Grand Princess cruise ship will now not be docking in San Francisco and will be brought to a "non-commercial port" and all 3,500 passengers and crew members will be unloaded and tested for the virus.
On Friday, President Trump claimed he would ideally keep the 2,300 passengers and another 1,000 crew members aboard the ship saying, "I don't need to have the numbers double because of one ship that wasn't our fault." One angry passenger bashed Trump for his statement.
"He's more than welcome to come onto the ship with us and serve us our dinners and bring me my towels," said Debbie Loftus, an American quarantined on the cruise ship with her elderly parents.
"We apologize but we were not given advance notice of this announcement by the US Federal government," the ship's announcement broadcast was heard in the video. "It would have been our preference to be the first to make this news available to you."
Debbie added that if Trump was serious, it could lead to a repeat of the quarantine on board the Diamond Princess cruise ship off Japan, which resulted in 700 getting infected and six deaths.