A seasonal worker in the southwest Alaska city of Dillingham has tested positive for COVID-19, state officials announced Saturday.
The Trident Seafoods worker was tested for the virus at the end of a two-week long quarantine required by the city, according to an electronic release from the state’s COVID-19 Unified Command Joint Information Center.
After receiving the positive test result, the worker was isolated and was set to leave Dillingham later Saturday through transportation arranged by Trident Seafoods.
“Although the individual is doing well and does not require hospitalization, Trident determined it would be best to transport the individual out of the community out of an abundance of caution to help protect Bristol Bay communities,” the release said.
The region is preparing for the Bristol Bay commercial salmon fishery, the biggest by volume in the world. Last year, the total value of the catch set a record at $306 million. Trident is one of nearly a dozen seafood processors that offered a plan earlier this spring to keep ensure safety as processing workers, fishermen and others stream into the region.
The individual was part of a group of “several workers quarantining in the same location,” but was the only one to test positive. Given that those workers were in close contact with the person who tested positive, they must all continue with another 14-day quarantine, the release said.
The workers arrived to Dillingham and went straight to a quarantine location, the release said. They haven’t had contact with people outside of that location and have had groceries and other supplies delivered, the release said.
“They haven’t exposed the community because they haven’t been out in the community,” Gina Carpenter, Dillingham public health nurse said in the release.
The Trident worker is the third known seafood industry worker to test positive for COVID-19 in Alaska. An Ocean Beauty Seafoods worker in Cordova tested positive for the virus in early May after traveling from the Lower 48. And the state of Alaska announced Friday that a non-resident seafood industry worker had tested positive for the virus in Anchorage.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.
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