Coronavirus COVID-19 case link to Sun Princess cruise ship that visited Kangaroo Island

Passengers from the Sun Princess cruise ship disembark at Penneshaw on January 19.
Passengers from the Sun Princess cruise ship disembark at Penneshaw on January 19.

KI CORONAVIRUS UPDATE: SA Premier Steven Marshall has made a statement advising against non-essential travel to Kangaroo Island.

Health officials in two states have now linked a coronavirus case to the cruise ship Sun Princess that disembarked on Kangaroo Island on March 16.

The Islander previously reported that the cruise company said there no coronavirus cases known on the ship at the time of disembarkation.

Tasmanian public health services overnight on March 27 were informed that a separate Tasmanian case involved a passenger who was on board the Sun Princess cruise ship that disembarked from Sydney on March 19.

Tasmanians, who were on the Sun Princess have been told to go into quarantine from today until April 2.

Meanwhile it has come to light that the Sun Princess was also mentioned in a health advisory from the Western Australia Health Department in reference to positive cruise ship cases.

Princess Cruises confirmed it is assisting public health authorities in their contact tracing efforts after a person who sailed on Sun Princess had later been diagnosed with COVID-19.

"As far as we are aware there is no direct connection to the cruise," a spokesperson said.

SA Health has not yet given any direction for whether there was any danger to residents on the Island after most of the ship's 2000 passengers disembarked and toured the Island on Monday, March 16.

SA Health and the State Government are also not making general announcements of where confirmed cases are in regional communities unless they have to for public safety reasons, so it is not known if there are any cases on KI yet.

Kangaroo Island residents meanwhile continue to call for an end of non-essential travel to the Island. The council was still fielding calls from mainlanders wanting to visit at Easter.

The State Government and deputy premier have said the Island and council would need to request such action and it would considered.

Mayor Michael Pengilly has resisted these calls saying he did not think there were that many tourists on the Island.

He said he asked on Facebook for people to contact him and he received 30 emails, which to his mind was not sufficient for the council to take action.

Deputy mayor Bob Teasdale however said he was very concerned about reports that non-essential travel was still happening and he would like further action immediately.

Concerned residents can contact the council if concerned at kicouncil@kicouncil.sa.gov.au

Mr Pengilly is encouraging concerned residents to contact Premier Stephen Marshall directly on premier@sa.gov.au

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