The U.S. Navy is rushing to test all 5000+ sailors abroad its aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) after at least 23 are tested positive with coronavirus disease (COVID-19).
The testing of the whole crew was announced by Acting Navy Secretary Thomas B. Modly.
“We found several more cases on board the ship,” Modly told reporters at the Pentagon Thursday. “We are in the process now of testing 100% of the crew of that ship to ensure that we’re able to contain whatever spread might have occurred there.”
According to Modly, the ship has been ordered to pull into Guam and will remain pierside as the entire crew is tested for the coronavirus. He added that the Sailors will not be allowed to disembark the carrier.
In spite of the new developments, the Acting Secretary insisted that the ship remains “operationally capable if called upon to do so”.
USS Theodore Roosevelt is America’s fourth Nimitz-class nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. The Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group (CSG) was forward-deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations “in support of security and stability in the Indo-Pacific region”.
The Theodore Roosevelt carrier strike group/Carrier Strike Group 9 is comprised of a total of 6,500 Sailors, the aircraft carrier, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 11, Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG 52), and six Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers from Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 23.
The carrier had recently conducted a scheduled port visit to Da Nang, Vietnam accompanied by USS Bunker Hill (CG 52).