Brett Crozier asks for the possibility of quarantining the entire crew.
The captain of a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier carrying more than 100 sailors infected with coronavirus has asked the Navy leadership to provide resources to isolate the entire crew to avoid possible loss of life in a situation that he described as rapidly deteriorating.
The unusual request from Captain Brett Crozier came in a letter that appeared in the possession of the San Francisco Chronicle newspaper. It was confirmed by a senior officer on board the aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt, which docked on the island of Guam after the COVID-19 outbreak on a ship with a crew of more than 4,000 people more than a week ago.
“This will require a political solution, but it’s the right thing to do,” Crozier wrote. – We are not at war. Sailors should not die. If we don’t take action now, we won’t be able to properly take care of our most reliable asset — our sailors.”
In a four-page letter to senior military officials, crozier noted that only a small contingent of infected sailors had been removed from the ship. Most of the crew members remain on the ship, where it is impossible to comply with official recommendations for 14-day quarantine and social distancing.
“Because of the inherent space limitations of a warship, we do not do this,” Crozier wrote. “The spread of the disease continues and is accelerating.”
He asked that “quarantine-compliant rooms” be set up for the entire crew on Guam “as soon as possible.”
Acting Secretary of the Navy Thomas Modly told CNN that the problem is that there are “not enough beds” on Guam right now. “We have to negotiate with local authorities to see if we can get hotel places, create tent – type facilities,” he added.
“We do not agree with the captain of this ship, and we will act very methodically because this is not a cruise ship. This is a ship equipped with weapons, which has planes on Board,” Modly said.