Eighteen sailors onboard the US Navy’s USS Kidd Arleigh Burke-class destroyer were found to be infected with the COVID-19 virus on Friday.
“A Sailor assigned to USS Kidd (DDG 100) tested positive for COVID-19 after being medically evacuated to the United States from operations at sea, April 23. Within 24 hours following the positive COVID-19 test of the Sailor, the Navy deployed a specialized medical team to the ship to conduct contact tracing and additional onsite testing. As of this morning, 17 additional Sailors have tested positive. Testing continues, and we expect additional cases,” the US Navy said in a statement.
The first sailor is stable and receiving care at a medical treatment facility in San Antonio, Texas. USS Kidd was underway in the US Fourth Fleet area of operations, in support of US Southern Command.
All measures are being taken to evaluate the extent of the COVID-19 transmission on the ship.
“The ship will return to port where the crew will continue to clean and disinfect the ship, observing protocols in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Navy-specific guidelines. Onboard test results will inform operational decisions,” the Navy added.
Citing an unnamed senior Navy official on Wednesday, CNN reported that “there are coronavirus cases on 26 US Navy warships currently.”
The Navy’s USS Theodore Roosevelt is the first deployed warship to report COVID-19 cases. The carrier has over 800 infected sailors.
Other US vessels to have virus outbreaks include USS Nimitz, USS Ronald Reagan and USS Carl Vinson aircraft carriers.