Advisory #: 2013-04
Date Issued: Jun 09 2013
To: MARINERS
Subject: CORONAVIRUS

ALL OPERATORS OF U.S. FLAG, EFFECTIVE U.S. CONTROLLED VESSELS, AND OTHER MARITIME INTERESTS

1. AS OF JUNE 5, 55 PEOPLE HAVE BEEN CONFIRMED TO BE INFECTED WITH A NEW VIRUS THAT WAS INITIALLY REFERRED TO AS NOVEL CORONAVIRUS (NCOV), AND IS NOW KNOWN AS MIDDLE EAST RESPIRATORY SYNDROME CORONAVIRUS (MERS-COV). MORE THAN HALF OF THE PEOPLE INFECTED HAVE DIED FROM THE VIRUS.

2. MOST CASES HAVE ORIGINATED FROM THE ARABIAN PENINSULA (JORDAN, QATAR, SAUDI ARABIA AND UNITED ARAB EMIRATES). SEVERAL CASES HAVE ALSO BEEN REPORTED IN ITALY, FRANCE, THE UK AND TUNISIA; THESE CASES ACQUIRED THEIR ILLNESS EITHER FROM TRAVEL TO THE ARABIAN PENINSULA OR FROM CLOSE CONTACT WITH A SICK PERSON WHO HAD TRAVELED TO THE AREA, INDICATING PERSON-TO-PERSON TRANSMISSION.

3. INFECTED PEOPLE HAVE SUFFERED A VERY SEVERE, PNEUMONIA-LIKE ILLNESS. CONSIDER A CREW MEMBER OR PASSENGER AS “SUSPICIOUS” IF THEY HAVE THE FOLLOWING:

    •AN ACUTE RESPIRATORY INFECTION, WHICH MAY INCLUDE FEVER (≥ 38°C, 100.4°F), COUGH AND SHORTNESS OF BREATH; AND
    •HISTORY OF TRAVEL FROM THE ARABIAN PENINSULA OR NEIGHBORING COUNTRIES WITHIN 14 DAYS;
    OR
    •PERSONS WHO DEVELOP SEVERE ACUTE LOWER RESPIRATORY ILLNESS WHO ARE CLOSE CONTACTS OF AN ILL SYMPTOMATIC TRAVELER WHO DEVELOPED FEVER AND ACUTE RESPIRATORY ILLNESS WITHIN 14 DAYS AFTER TRAVEL FROM THE ARABIAN PENINSULA OR NEIGHBORING COUNTRIES*. CLOSE CONTACT IS DEFINED AS PROVIDING CARE FOR THE ILL TRAVELER (E.G., A HEALTHCARE WORKER OR FAMILY MEMBER), OR HAVING SIMILAR CLOSE PHYSICAL CONTACT; OR HAVING STAYED AT THE SAME PLACE (E.G. LIVED WITH, VISITED) AS THE TRAVELER WHILE THE TRAVELER WAS ILL.

4. SUSPICIOUS ILL CREW MEMBERS AND PASSENGERS SHOULD BE ISOLATED IN A PRIVATE CABIN UNTIL THEY ARE EVALUATED BY A DOCTOR TO PREVENT TRANSMISSION TO OTHERS. CONTACT WITH OTHER PASSENGERS AND CREW SHOULD BE MINIMIZED. IF MASKS ARE AVAILABLE, THE ILL CREW MEMBER OR PASSENGER SHOULD WEAR A MASK WHILE NOT IN ISOLATION TO PREVENT FURTHER SPREAD.

5. CABIN MATES AND OTHER CLOSE CONTACTS OF ILL PERSONS SHOULD BE ACTIVELY MONITORED FOR FEVER AND RESPIRATORY SYMPTOMS FOR 14 DAYS AFTER THE LAST KNOWN EXPOSURE.

6. HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS SHOULD FOLLOW THE U.S. CENTERS FOR DISEASES CONTROL (CDC) INFECTION CONTROL RECOMMENDATIONS FOR THE SEVERE ACUTE RESPIRATORY SYNDROME (SARS) CORONAVIRUS, WHICH CAN BE FOUND AT HTTP://WWW.CDC.GOV/CORONAVIRUS/MERS/DOWNLOADS/ISOLATION2007.PDF

7. U.S FOREIGN QUARANTINE REGULATIONS, 42 CFR PART 71.21, REQUIRE THE MASTER OF A SHIP DESTINED FOR A U.S. PORT TO IMMEDIATELY REPORT THE ONBOARD OCCURRENCE OF ANY DEATH OR ANY ILL PERSON AMONG PASSENGERS OR CREW TO THE QUARANTINE STATION WITH JURISDICTION OVER THE PORT AT WHICH THE SHIP WILL ARRIVE.
    

    • REPORTING GUIDANCE CAN BE FOUND AT HTTP://WWW.CDC.GOV/QUARANTINE/TRAVEL-INDUSTRY/CRUISE/NOTIFICATION-PUBLIC-HEALTH-AUTHORITIES-ILL-PASSENGERS-CREW-DESTINED-UNITED-STATES.HTML
    • INFORMATION REGARDING CDC QUARANTINE STATIONS CAN BE FOUND AT HTTP://WWW.CDC.GOV/QUARANTINE/QUARANTINESTATIONS.HTML

8. TAKING THESE EVERYDAY ACTIONS CAN HELP PREVENT THE SPREAD OF GERMS AND PROTECT AGAINST COLDS, FLU, AND OTHER ILLNESSES:

    •WASH YOUR HANDS OFTEN WITH SOAP AND WATER. IF SOAP AND WATER ARE NOT AVAILABLE, USE AN ALCOHOL-BASED HAND SANITIZER.
    •AVOID TOUCHING YOUR EYES, NOSE, AND MOUTH. GERMS SPREAD THIS WAY.
    •AVOID CLOSE CONTACT WITH SICK PEOPLE.

9. PROMPT MEDICAL CARE IS REQUIRED AND MAY INCLUDE LIFE SUPPORT.

10. CDC INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE AT HTTP://WWW.CDC.GOV/CORONAVIRUS/MERS/ AND A TRAVEL NOTICE IS AVAILABLE AT HTTP://WWWNC.CDC.GOV/TRAVEL/NOTICES/WATCH/CORONAVIRUS-ARABIAN-PENINSULA. HOWEVER, THE CDC, WHO, AND U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE DO NOT RECOMMEND ANY TRAVEL OR TRADE RESTRICTIONS AT THIS TIME.

11. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE AT HTTP://WWW.WHO.INT/CSR/DISEASE/CORONAVIRUS_INFECTIONS/EN/

12. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION REGARDING THIS ADVISORY, CONTACT CAPTAIN ROBERT FORD, MARITIME ADMINISTRATION, OFFICE OF SECURITY, CODE: MAR-420, ROOM W25-308, 1200 NEW JERSEY AVE, S.E., WASHINGTON, DC 20590, TELEPHONE 202-366-0223, FACSIMILE 202-366-3954, TLX II 710.822.9426 (MARAD DOT WSH), OR EMAIL: MARADSECURITY@DOT.GOV.