CORONAVIRUS

Utahn Stuck On Cruise Ship Off California Coast Amid Coronavirus Concerns

Mar 7, 2020, 9:57 PM | Updated: 10:16 pm

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — As the Grand Princess cruise ship remained anchored off the California coast amid coronavirus fears, a Utah woman onboard said she still wasn’t sure when the situation would come to an end.

Monica Achter said she and other passengers had been confined to their rooms since Thursday afternoon.

When she took a peek outside on Saturday, the halls resembled a “ghost ship.”

“My parents — I’m really worried about them and they’re around the corner, down the hall from me, so I wanted to make sure they were okay and give them a hug,” Achter said.

Vice President Mike Pence confirmed on Friday that 19 crew members and two passengers had tested positive for COVID-19, while officials said 24 others tested negative.

Achter said passengers had been receiving regular updates from the crew.

“We have also asked the health authorities once again to allow us to give you some time out of the (indecipherable) room, but we have not yet received approval to implement fresh air breaks,” a crew member could be heard announcing over the intercom during an interview with Achter Saturday evening via FaceTime.

Achter has had to manage a range of emotions over the situation.

She said she’d like to at least see testing move forward to potentially start the clock on any quarantine period.

“We’re a little frustrated with what’s going on with, you know, why we can’t dock and why we’re not being accepted,” Achter said.

Though Achter was eager to return to Utah, she also expressed fears that people wouldn’t be terribly welcoming to her and her family members amid some of the hysteria that has surfaced about the virus.

“Please don’t get upset at our families,” Achter said. “They have nothing going on with it.”

Still, she said she was trying to remain hopeful and positive about being stuck offshore.

“You kind of just have to go with it,” Achter said. “There’s nothing you can do, so why be gloom-and-doom, you know.”


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  • Avoid close contact with people who may be sick
  • Avoid touching your face
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue and then throw the tissue in the trash
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. Always wash your hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.
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The CDC does not recommend wearing a facemask respirator to protect yourself from coronavirus unless a healthcare professional recommends it.

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Utahn Stuck On Cruise Ship Off California Coast Amid Coronavirus Concerns