US is to evacuate 428 Americans from Diamond Princess cruise ship and put them in 14-day quarantine at California Air Force base – as infections on board rise by 67 in three days to 285

Saturday, February 15, 2020
By Paul Martin

Two State Department planes will be dispatched to repatriate the Americans
The evacuees will then be screened at Travis Air Force Base in Sacramento
Paul and Cheryl Molesky, from New York, have ‘mixed emotions’ about rescue

15 February 2020

The United States will tomorrow evacuate the 428 Americans trapped aboard a cruise ship in Japan as the number of coronavirus-infected passengers continues to climb.

Two State Department planes will be dispatched to airlift the stranded citizens and their families to Travis Air Force Base in Sacramento, California.

Once on US soil, they will undergo a further 14 days of quarantine, sparking ‘apprehension’ among passengers who have been under lock-down aboard the Diamond Princess since February 5.

The cruise ship initially had 3,700 passengers and crew, but during its quarantine in Yokahama some have been carted off the liner to be treated for the deadly infection.

The rescue mission comes as the number of confirmed cases on the ship jumped 67 on Saturday, bringing the total number of diagnoses to 285.

Paul and Cheryl Molesky, from Syracuse, New York, are among those being rescued tomorrow.

Asked how they felt about being evacuated, Ms Molesky said they were a ‘bit apprehensive’ about again being quarantined on arrival to the US.

She told Sky News: ‘We are relieved but we’re still a little bit shocked…

‘We found out that we’re going to have to be quarantined for an additional 14 days in the United States, so there’s some mixed emotions there.

Mr Molesky added: ‘Because of the speed of what has happened here this last half hour we’re a little dizzy.

The couple also paid tribute to the Japanese government and the Diamond Princess staff for making their stay ‘very comfortable’.

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