61 passengers on South Africa flights test positive for coronavirus

November 27, 2021, 80,000 passengers on flights

Red Cross ambulances waiting to take those who tested positive to hotels. Photo: Laurens Bosch ANP

Health board officials say 61 of the 600 people on two flights from South Africa which arrived at Schiphol airport on Friday morning have now tested positive for coronavirus.

Officials said on Friday evening they expected around 85 people would prove positive, after initial tests suggested a 13% infection rate, but told news agency ANP later the actual total is 61.

All the passengers reportedly had to show a negative fast test no older than 24 hours before boarding the flight.

The passengers were kept at the airport well into the night while waiting to be tested and for the results. The Netherlands imposed a flight ban from southern Africa on Friday morning because of concerns about a new form of coronavirus, now named Omicron.

Officials say as yet they do not know if the passengers have the Omicron variant of the virus, which was first identified by South African experts, and scientists at Erasmus University in Rotterdam are now working on the samples to find out.

The World Health Organisation now says that the new variant, which has been identified in South Africa, Botswana and Hong Kong (via a traveller) appears to spread more quickly than other varieties of coronavirus.

The European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control has described it as a ‘variant of concern’ and said it ‘may be associated with increased transmissibility, significant reduction in vaccine effectiveness and increased risk for reinfections’.

Passengers

Passengers from the two flights who tested positive were taken to a hotel where they will stay until declared coronavirus free, officials said, unless they live alone in the Netherlands, in which case they were taken home.

People with a negative test are also supposed to go into quarantine for at least five days.

One of the passengers on aboard was Stephanie Nolen, the New York Times global health reporter, who was on her first plane trip in two years and provided updates on the situation via Twitter.

Although testing negative herself, she said she wondered how long that would be the case, given the passengers were cooped up in a small space at the airport, and many were not wearing face masks.

‘Probably 30% of people are wearing no mask or only over mouth. Dutch authorities not enforcing. We’re just all in this unventilated room at hour 12, breathing on each other,’ she said.

Tested negative. At least today. After all that time with maskless yellers in an unventilated space – we shall see what the next days bring. Now I sit in the terminal for 10 hours until a flight to YYZ (bets open on something going amiss on that one)

— Stephanie Nolen (@snolen) November 27, 2021

Others spoke about the lack of information from officials, and said it took seven hours before they were given anything to eat or drink.

The Kennemerland health board, which is responsible for testing at the airport, said it understood the frustration under passengers about the situation. ‘People who have just had a long journey… were confronted with a situation we have never had to deal with before,’ the health board said in a statement.

However, the operation was necessary ‘in the interests of public health,’ officials said.

Even though testing is required before flights, the Volkskrant reported earlier this week that some 80,000 passengers on flights to the Netherlands have been seated close to people infected with coronavirus.

The infected passengers – some 11,488 in total – were spread over 9,343 flights. Passengers within two seats of the infected person in all directions, and crew members who have been in close contact the person involved, are considered to be at risk.

Flight ban

Although announced as a flight ban, the Netherlands is not refusing to allow in flights from southern Africa, and KLM has said it will continue to fly.

However, only people whose journey is strictly necessary, live in the Netherlands or are transferring to another flight will be allowed to travel, the airline said.

News Related

OTHER NEWS

The Voice scandal deepens as dozens of women detail abuse, harassment

Photo: Koen van Weel ANP A YouTube documentary about sexual intimidation and abuse surrounding The Voice of Holland talent show has detailed a long list of claims about sexual abuse, ... Read more »

Patients re-infected with Omicron variant have ARVI symptoms or none, says expert

According to the expert, those who were infected or got a jab long ago show more severe symptoms Read more »

Experts question the latest Anne Frank betrayal theory

The Anne Frank House complex in Amsterdam. Photo: DutchNews.nl The orchestrated publicity onslaught accompanying Tuesday’s new book about the betrayal of Anne Frank included very strict rules for journalists given ... Read more »

Defendants in Argentine cocaine case sentenced to between 13 and 18 years

The criminal case was initiated on November 15, 2017 Read more »

Plenty of ice masters but little hope of a big freeze this winter

Skating in Broek in Waterland, north of Amsterdam. Photo: DutchNews.nl Perhaps spurred on by last year’s spells of cold weather which lasted long enough to take to the ice, some ... Read more »

Almaty police unearth secret graves of terrorists eliminated during failed insurrection

Earlier,the chief of the Almaty police department said that during the riots, unidentified individuals carried out at least seven attacks on morgues, during which the bodies of 41 deceased individuals were spirited away Read more »

Russia records another 38,850 coronavirus cases, highest daily number since Nov 13

Coronavirus recoveries rose by 24,478 to 9,950,333 in the past 24 hours Read more »

Unlethal weapon: Rotterdam police may draw paintball gun on rioters

Photo: Depositphotos.com Rotterdam mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb has asked the justice ministry to investigate if the city’s police officers can be equipped with paintball guns to make sure confrontations do not ... Read more »

Over 300 mln COVID-19 cases confirmed all over world, WHO says

The COVID-19 incidence rose by 3,156,986 in the last 24 hours Read more »

Detention of REvil hackers crucial for Russia, US in fight against cybercrime — Kremlin

Last Friday and Saturday, Moscow’s Tverskoy Court arrested ten alleged members of the REvil hacking group responsible for ransomware attacks Read more »

WHO experts' visit to Sputnik V manufacturing sites on approval — Gamaleya Center

Earlier, the World Health Organization revealed that it expected further information on the Sputnik V vaccine in late January Read more »

More details emerge about death of four-year-old Belgian boy

Photo: DutchNews.nl More details have been emerging in the Belgian media about the mystery surrounding the death of a four-year-old boy whose body was found in Zeeland on Monday evening. ... Read more »

Orthodox believers warmly welcome Epiphany by taking icy dunks using COVID caution

The traditional Epiphany night dips were cancelled in some Russian regions due to the pandemic Read more »

Majorca attack witness comes forward after photo broadcast

Photo: Depositphotos.com The potential eyewitness police were seeking in their investigation into the death of Carlo Heuvelman on the island of Majorca last summer has come forward after a photo ... Read more »

Call for review of rules on patients who test positive for coronavirus

Operations cannot currently go ahead if a patient has the virus. Photo: Depositphotos.com As many as one in three people with coronavirus in hospital were originally admitted for a different ... Read more »

Hong Kong officials try to track down Dutch hamsters – with Covid

Photo: Depositphotos.com The authorities in Hong Kong are anxious to trace the whereabouts of hamsters, reportedly imported from the Netherlands, which may be infected with coronavirus. Some of the hamsters ... Read more »

Police appeal for Majorca attack eyewitness to come forward

Photo: Politie.nl The police have published an unblurred photograph of a man they think may have filmed the fatal attack on Carlo Heuvelman on Majorca last July, in a last ... Read more »

Mayors blunt theatre hairdresser protest, say they will enforce Covid rules

Photo: De Kleine Komedie The mayors of the Netherlands biggest cities say they will act to enforce the coronavirus rules during Wednesday’s protests to draw attention to the continued closure ... Read more »

World's oldest man dies at 112 - Guinness World Records

He has died at the age of 112 Read more »

Households will have average of €40 a month less to spend in 2022

Photo: Depositphotos.com Households will have an average of €40 less to spend a month this year, national budget institute Nibud has calculated. ‘This will affect everyone,’ Nibud director Arjan Vliegenthartd ... Read more »

Russia calls for investigating indiscriminate deaths of women during conflicts — diplomat

According to Dmitry Polyansky, Russia considers it "inadmissible to turn a blind eye to such crimes or justify them by the inevitability of the so-called collateral losses" Read more »

WHO expects Russia to submit final data on Sputnik V in late January

While the process is ongoing, the details must remain confidential Read more »

Page of Russian delegation at Vienna talks blocked by mistake — Meta

Earlier, Facebook management limited access to the Russian delegation’s official page Read more »

The deepest cut: theatres open as hairdressers in corona protest

Photo: De Kleine Komedie Almost a hundred theatres, museums and galleries across the Netherlands – including the Van Gogh Museum and Concertgebouw – are opening illicitly on Wednesday by turning ... Read more »

Global tourism to recover in 2024 at the earliest — UNWTO

"The economic contribution of tourism in 2021 is estimated at $1.9 trillion, above the $1.6 trillion in 2020, but still well below the pre-pandemic value of $3.5 trillion," UNWTO said Read more »

Digitalised Holland Amerika line passenger lists reveal famous names

Photo: Bain News Service, publisher via Wikimedia Commons Volunteers have digitalised some 150,000 handwritten passenger lists listing people who travelled on the Holland Amerika Line (HAL) between Rotterdam and the ... Read more »

Spasskaya Tower festival will be held on Red Square from August 26 to September 4

In 2021, 29 groups from five countries - Russia, Belarus, Greece, Mexico and Qatar - performed at the festival Read more »

Herd immunity to COVID-19 in Russia standing at 63.9% — deputy PM

To date, 10,865,512 coronavirus cases have been confirmed in Russia, with 9,902,935 patients having recovered from the disease Read more »

2G and 3G systems have minor impact on coronavirus spread: research

Photo: DutchNews.nl The introduction of a 2G or 3G system – restricting access to events and locations on the basis of vaccination or test status – will not have much ... Read more »

COVID-19 incidence in Kazakhstan increases almost 20-fold over month, Health Minister says

According to Azhar Giniyat, 16 out of 17 Kazakh regions are currently in the red zone in terms of the rates of the spread of the infection Read more »

Blocking Russian delegation's page was act of censorship — Human Rights Council member

Facebook unblocked the Russian delegation’s page only on January 17 Read more »

Viber opens representative office in Russia under ‘localization' law

Earlier, it was reported that the company registered a personal account on the website of the Russian Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology, and Mass Media under the law "localization" law Read more »

Russian lower house drops bill on COVID-19 certificates — chairman

According to the suggested amendments, Russia’s adult population would be able to visit public places only with either a QR code confirming vaccination, a document certifying that a person had recovered from COVID-19, or a medical exemption from inoculation Read more »

Facebook provides no reason for blocking page of Russian delegation at Vienna talks

It is reported that the necessary administrative and technical preparations were made for slowing down the service’s operation in Russia Read more »

Threats against local councillors triple but most will stand again: survey

Photo: Depositphotos.com Threats and violence against local councillors by members of the public have tripled since 2015, a survey by broadcaster NOS and the Dutch association for councillors has shown. ... Read more »

Afghan families lose court battle to force evacuation from Kabul

Photo: Depositphotos.com A court has rejected a bid by four Afghan families to force the Dutch state to evacuate them immediately from Kabul following the takeover of the country by ... Read more »

Court fines MyHeritage 1.5 mln rubles over violation of personal data law

The company was founded in Israel as an international social network and genealogy site Read more »

App launched to help people with speech difficulties contact 112

Photo: depositphotos A new app has been developed to help people with speech and language difficulties use the 112 emergency hotline. The 112NL app allows people to communicate directly with ... Read more »

Poll reveals how many Russians can't imagine their day without a cell phone

At the same time, according to the poll, nearly a third of Russians consider work to be the most important part of their day Read more »

Moscow court fines Google over $50,000 for links to websites banned in Russia

Since 2021, the court has systematically fined Google for the constant failure to delete information banned in the country Read more »
On free-english-test.com you will find lots of free English exam practice materials to help you improve your English skills: grammar, listening, reading, writing, ielts, toeic