According to USA Today and the BBC on the 22nd, hundreds of scientists and researchers in Antarctica have lived on the only continent in the world far away from the novel coronavirus for several months. But now, this “pure land” has been lost.
Chile’s Bernardo O’Higgins Research Station on the Antarctic Peninsula has found 36 cases of COVID-19, including 26 military personnel and 10 maintenance workers, the Chilean military announced Monday.
This means that COVID-19 cases have been recorded on seven continents.
It is reported that the Bernardo O’Higgins Research Station is one of the four permanent bases owned by Chile in Antarctica, which is under the responsibility of the army.
A few days after the news came, the Chilean navy confirmed three confirmed cases on the supply ship “Sagento Aldia”.
The ship delivered supplies and related personnel to the Antarctic Research Station on 27 November and returned to Chile on 10 December.
Three crew members were tested for the coronavirus after returning to their naval base in Talkavano, Chile, and tested positive.
The Chilean navy said that all those who went to the Antarctica were tested for PCR for the novel coronavirus, and the results were negative.
Michele Logan Finnimore, Executive Secretary of the Council of Directors of the National Antarctic Administrators, previously said that people planning to go to Antarctica usually undergo standard coronavirus testing in their home countries, and then quarantine in the country of entry for at least two weeks before flying to Antarctica.
When you arrive, you usually get a standard coronavirus test again and require people to practice social distancing and wear masks.
Although most countries have reduced the number of scientists and staff sent to Antarctica, hundreds of people have arrived recently.
Other countries that currently have research stations in Antarctica have not reported cases of COVID-19.