Sunday, 14 Jul 2024

The stories about Indian crew members have died on their ships as they awaited evacuation


Glen PereiraGlen Pereira

NEWS24.CO.ID - Tragic, two Indian crew members have died on their ships as they awaited evacuation. The Marella Explorer 2 cruise ship, which had just its crew members on board, was sailing from the Mexican port of Puerto Progreso to an unconfirmed European port, where it was originally scheduled to dock on Sunday.

And on April 8, Glen Pereira, a 30-year-old cabin steward on the Marella Explorer 2 cruise ship currently sailing in the Atlantic Ocean, was found dead in his room.

On April 6, two days before his death, Glen spoke to his cousin Collin (who worked for the same company and currently lives in the coastal Indian state of Goa).

Glen also spoke to his family in Goa later that evening and told them he had some pain in his throat and mild fever. But he insisted there was nothing to worry about.

That was the last time the Pereira family had heard from Glen.

One of Collin's friend,  Jackson informed that Glen was kept in an isolation ward on the ship because he had developed fever and throat infection.

On April 5, 48-year-old Andrew Fernandes, an assistant security officer on cruise liner Costa Favolosa, died of coronavirus in Miami, Florida.

His sister said he had been put on ventilator support after he contracted pneumonia and a lung infection and needed to be transferred to a hospital in Miami.

Fear of being infected by the coronavirus haunts most crew members who have been kept in isolation.

Rahul Shanbagh, 24, from Goa's Margoa city, is a crew member on the MSC Grandiosa cruise ship. He has been stranded on the ship since mid-March.

The ship has 350 crew members on board, including nearly 200 Indians, and is currently docked in Civitavecchia in Italy.

"There were at least 14 cases [of coronavirus] reported on this ship, of which four were Indians. Currently, we [Indians] are the only ones left here. Everyone from all other countries has been evacuated."

A statement released by Costa Diadema on April 10 on the status of its Indian crew said: "To date, several attempts made with different solutions have not had a positive outcome with the Indian authorities."

Another seafarer, who did not want to reveal his name, said he was stranded on a cruise ship named Norwegian Sky, currently docked in the Bahamas.

"We are mentally stressed, frightened and lonely. My room is very small with no window," he told Al Jazeera. "We just want to get home and stay close to our family."