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Journey To Japan: COVID-19 Testing, Protocols & Checkpoints For Athletes, Media

TOKYO — The KSL Olympic Team has arrived in Japan, and what a journey it was to get there for everyone.

The journey to Tokyo started with a familiar sight – COVID-19 tests. One 96 hours prior to departure, then another at 72 hours.

With negative results, the team headed to the Salt Lake City International Airport on July 16 – that 4 a.m. arrival time was a bit of a struggle for some.

After a quick stop in Seattle, they were off on a 10-hour flight to Japan.

And they agreed – it went by pretty fast.

Once on the ground, the COVID-19 protocols continued – paperwork, certified test results and another COVID-19 test.

Everything had to be perfect – and negative – for the team to move on – and it was.

Once on the bus, they headed to the hotel. Right away, they noticed the streets are pretty empty here in Japan. Tokyo is currently under a state of emergency due to the pandemic that lasts through the end of the Games.

At the hotel – a quick temperature check and then off to their rooms.

KSL’s Shara Park, Alex Cabrero & Jerimiah Jensen are in the middle of a 14-day quarantine, and they’re only allowed to move between the hotel, International Broadcast Center and NBC workspace at the Hilton Odaiba Hotel.

But even though they aren’t allowed to use public transportation or head out into the streets, they’ve been able to gather stories and work with media partners and come up with some fun stories to tell.

Over 11,000 athletes will compete in 339 events at 42 venues over the next two-and-a-half weeks.

Organizers have spent $6.7 billion on the Tokyo Games — everything from renovating venues to supplies needed to keep everyone safe from COVID-19.

Safety is one of the biggest components of these games — COVID-19 cases have already popped up among athletes.

On Wednesday, KSL learned Utah’s Jake Gibb is out of a partner for beach volleyball after Taylor Crabb tested positive for the virus, and University of Utah gymnast Kara Eaker, an alternate for Team USA, tested positive earlier this week and is now in isolation.

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