What's Happening: Cruise ship tests, Prisons sanitized | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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What's Happening: Cruise ship tests, Prisons sanitized

Adilisha Patrom, owner of a co-working and event space next to Gallaudet University, organizes face masks, hand sanitizer and other supplies inside her pop up shop on Thursday, March 5, 2020, in Washington. Inside her storefront, she displays different face mask models and hand sanitizer bottles alongside information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (AP Photo/Nathan Ellgren)
March 06, 2020 - 4:24 PM

As cases of the new coronavirus surpassed 100,000 worldwide, people on a cruise ship tested positive, Tokyo Olympics organizers are adjusting for the torch's arrival in Japan, migrants headed to Europe are facing added hardships and shoppers around the globe continue stocking up.

These are some of the latest developments Friday:

PEOPLE ON CRUISE SHIP TEST POSITIVE

Two passengers and 19 crew members on a huge cruise ship being held off the California coast tested positive for the virus, Vice-President Mike Pence announced. Federal officials working with the state plan to bring the Grand Princess to a non-commercial port where the more than 3,500 people on board can be tested for COVID-19. Pence said those needing to be quarantined will be and those needing medical attention will get it. Princess Cruises said 45 people were included in the first round of testing aboard the ship held off San Francisco.

PRISONS ON HIGH ALERT

U.S. jails and prisons are sanitizing cells amid fears that COVID-19 could spread through vast inmate populations. Health officials have long said jails and prisons are ideal environments for virus outbreaks: Inmates share small cells and use toilets a few feet from their beds. Already, prisons have become a hot spot in other nations touched by the outbreak. In the U.S., more people are incarcerated on a per capita basis than anywhere else.

STADIUMS EMPTY, TORCH PROCEEDS

More sporting events are being cancelled and the U.S. had what appears to be its first sporting event held without fans because of the virus. In Japan, organizers of the Tokyo Olympics say the arrival ceremony for the torch on March 20 will be downsized and that 140 children will not be sent to Greece to give the flame a send off. But organizers have said repeatedly the Olympics will open as scheduled in late July.

STOCK UP AND A POP-UP

Supermarkets across the U.S. are seeing spiking demand for items like toilet paper and canned beans as people prepare for the possibility of a quarantine or having to work from home. Unlike with hurricanes and other natural disasters, companies say the stockpiling is happening across the country and is expected to last for weeks. In Washington D.C., the newest pop-up shop is dedicated to coronavirus prevention supplies.

ANOTHER HURDLE FOR MIGRANTS

The virus has become another hurdle in the long and dangerous journeys of Europe-bound migrants. The idea that asylum-seekers could carry the virus across borders has made them more unwanted than before in some European countries. Hungary, Greece and Croatia are among the ones citing fears of possible infection from people coming from countries such as Iran. Thousands of migrants have amassed on the Turkey-Greece border hoping to enter the European Union.

VIRUS BREACHES VATICAN WALLS

A Vatican spokesman confirmed the first case of the new coronavirus at the city-state that is home to the pope. Spokesman Matteo Bruni said non-emergency medical services at the Vatican have been closed for sanitizing. Details on the person's identity were not made available. Pope Francis has been recovering from a cold and the Vatican has said he doesn't have anything else.

FESTIVAL, COLLEGE CLASSES CANCELED

In Texas, Austin city officials cancelled the South by Southwest festival days after high-profile companies including Netflix and TikTok pulled out of the event. In hard-hit Washington state, classes were cancelled for nearly 60,000 college students, who will instead be taught online starting Monday. The University of Washington says the change will be in effect through the end of winter quarter this month.

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The Associated Press receives support for health and science coverage from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible for all content.

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Follow AP coverage of the virus outbreak at https://apnews.com/VirusOutbreak and https://apnews.com/UnderstandingtheOutbreak

News from © The Associated Press, 2020
The Associated Press

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