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Positive COVID-19 Results Grow To 92 Aboard Factory Trawler

Hope McKenney


The results of outstanding COVID-19 tests on an American Seafoods trawler have come back, according to the company.

Earlier this week, 86 crew members on the American Dynasty – a 272-foot factory trawler based out of Seattle – tested positive for the virus, but nine tests were still outstanding.

"Of the nine individuals who were tested, six came back positive. They are in quarantine facilities in Seattle and they are being monitored by medical personnel," said American Seafoods spokesperson Suzanne Lagoni. 

This brings the total case count on the factory trawler to 92. There were 126 people on board.

Lagoni said the crew was quarantined and had several tests for COVID-19 before boarding the American Dynasty to fish for hake off Washington's coast. Only those crew members who tested negative for the virus were permitted to board the vessel. 

However, the company said it required only a five-day quarantine, which is far less than the two weeks that it can take for people infected with COVID-19 to show symptoms, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

American Seafoods is based in Seattle and runs six vessels that fish for pollock, hake, and sole in both the North Pacific Ocean and the Bering Sea.

The American Dynasty is a trawler with an onboard factory to process, package, and freeze fish while at sea. It was last in Dutch Harbor at the end of March and is set to return for pollock "B" season, which starts later this month and ends Nov. 1. 

American Seafoods said it's cooperating with the U.S. Coast Guard, the CDC, and the Port of Seattle, among others, to conduct a complete investigation.

The company is also testing crew members on two more vessels as a precautionary measure. There are 114 people on the American Triumph, and 117 people on the Northern Jaeger. All results are pending. 


Hope McKenney is a public radio news director, reporter, producer and host based in the Aleutian Islands, Alaska.
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