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American cruise passengers quarantined at bases

U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess and officials wait for the takeoff of a Kalitta Air airplane bound for the U.S., Monday at Haneda airport in Tokyo. [Cheryl and Paul Molesky via The Associated Press]
U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess and officials wait for the takeoff of a Kalitta Air airplane bound for the U.S., Monday at Haneda airport in Tokyo. [Cheryl and Paul Molesky via The Associated Press]

TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif. — More than 300 American cruise ship passengers, including 14 who tested positive for coronavirus, were being quarantined at military bases in California and Texas on Monday after arriving from Japan on charter flights overnight.

One plane carrying cruise passengers touched down at Travis Air Force Base in Northern California just before midnight Sunday, while another arrived at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas early Monday. The passengers will remain at the bases for two weeks.

Japan’s Defense Minister Taro Kono tweeted earlier that Japanese troops helped transport 340 U.S. passengers on 14 buses from Yokohama port to Tokyo’s Haneda airport. About 380 Americans were on the cruise ship.

The U.S. said it arranged for the evacuation because people on the Diamond Princess were at a high risk of exposure to the new virus that’s been spreading in Asia. For the departing Americans, the evacuation cuts short a 14-day quarantine that began aboard the cruise ship Feb. 5.

The State Department announced later that 14 of the evacuees received confirmation they had the virus but were allowed to board the flight because they had no symptoms. They were being kept isolated from other passengers on the flight, the U.S. State and Health and Human Services said in a joint statement.

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health, said Sunday that an infected person who shows minimal symptoms could still pass the virus to someone else.

It’s unclear which base the 14 who tested positive for the virus went to.

Officials said the evacuees who arrived at Travis Air Force Base will be housed at a different location from the more than 200 other Americans who were already being quarantined on the base, in a hotel. Those people have been at the base since early February, when they arrived on flights from China.

No Travis airmen will have contact with the passengers, officials said.

Now that they’re in the U.S., the cruise ship passengers must go through another 14 days of quarantine at the military facilities — meaning they will have been under quarantine for a total of nearly four weeks.

Australia, Canada, Hong Kong and Italy were planning similar flights of passengers. Other governments, including Canada and Hong Kong, also will require the passengers to undergo a second 14-day quarantine.

Japan on Monday announced another 99 infections on the Diamond Princess, raising the ship’s total number of cases to 454. Overall, Japan has 419 confirmed cases of the virus, including one death. The United States has confirmed 15 cases within the country. Separately, one U.S. citizen died in China.

Americans Cheryl and Paul Molesky, a couple from Syracuse, New York, opted to trade one coronavirus quarantine for another, leaving the cruise ship to fly back to the U.S. Cheryl Molesky said the rising number of patients on the ship factored into the decision.

“We are glad to be going home,” Cheryl Molesky earlier told NHK TV in Japan. “It’s just a little bit disappointing that we’ll have to go through quarantine again, and we will probably not be as comfortable as the Diamond Princess, possibly.”

She sent The Associated Press a video of her and her husband boarding the plane with other Americans.

“Well, we’re exhausted, but we’re on the plane and that’s a good feeling. Pretty miserable wearing these masks though, and everybody had to go to the bathroom on the bus,” she said.

Some American passengers said they would pass up the opportunity to fly to the United States because of the additional quarantine. There also was worry about being on a long flight with other passengers who may be infected or in an incubation period.

One of the Americans, Matthew Smith, said in a tweet Sunday that he saw a passenger with no face mask talking at close quarters with another passenger. He said he and his wife scurried away.

“If there are secondary infections on board, this is why,” he said. “And you wanted me to get on a bus with her?”

He said the American health officials who visited their room was apparently surprised that the couple had decided to stay, and wished them luck.

“Thanks, but we’re fine,” Smith said he told them.

Related Photos
<strong>A charter flight transporting passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship arrives at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua)</strong>

A charter flight transporting passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship arrives at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua)

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-2a588c2039d7c054b7794aa115d49f3a.jpg" alt="Photo - A charter flight transporting passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship arrives at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) " title=" A charter flight transporting passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship arrives at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) "><figcaption> A charter flight transporting passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship arrives at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-4f2631473dbfa8eb1075035d3dac742b.jpg" alt="Photo - Buses carrying U.S. passengers who were aboard the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, seen in background, leaves Yokohama port, near Tokyo, early Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. The cruise ship was carrying nearly 3,500 passengers and crew members under quarantine. (Jun Hirata/Kyodo News via AP) " title=" Buses carrying U.S. passengers who were aboard the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, seen in background, leaves Yokohama port, near Tokyo, early Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. The cruise ship was carrying nearly 3,500 passengers and crew members under quarantine. (Jun Hirata/Kyodo News via AP) "><figcaption> Buses carrying U.S. passengers who were aboard the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, seen in background, leaves Yokohama port, near Tokyo, early Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. The cruise ship was carrying nearly 3,500 passengers and crew members under quarantine. (Jun Hirata/Kyodo News via AP) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-dfaa7718dd44d284935c9daa2eafa57c.jpg" alt="Photo - A group of ambulances from the Solano EMS Cooperative stage at the visitor center at Travis Air Force Base, adjacent to Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. A group of Americans cut short a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo, to be whisked back to America. But they will have to spend another quarantine period at U.S. military facilities including Travis to make sure they don't have the new virus that's been sweeping across Asia. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) " title=" A group of ambulances from the Solano EMS Cooperative stage at the visitor center at Travis Air Force Base, adjacent to Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. A group of Americans cut short a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo, to be whisked back to America. But they will have to spend another quarantine period at U.S. military facilities including Travis to make sure they don't have the new virus that's been sweeping across Asia. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) "><figcaption> A group of ambulances from the Solano EMS Cooperative stage at the visitor center at Travis Air Force Base, adjacent to Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. A group of Americans cut short a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo, to be whisked back to America. But they will have to spend another quarantine period at U.S. military facilities including Travis to make sure they don't have the new virus that's been sweeping across Asia. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-821894881e8df25ca98e352c6977e53f.jpg" alt="Photo - A charter flight transporting passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship moves behind military airplanes after it arrived at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) " title=" A charter flight transporting passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship moves behind military airplanes after it arrived at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) "><figcaption> A charter flight transporting passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship moves behind military airplanes after it arrived at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-4bb0cc8bdc5da648b66111ce60973b4b.jpg" alt="Photo - A bus carrying U.S. passengers who were aboard the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess arrives at Haneda airport in Tokyo, before the passengers board a Kalitta airplane chartered by the U.S. government Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. The cruise ship was carrying nearly 3,500 passengers and crew members under quarantine. (Sadayuki Goto/Kyodo News via AP) " title=" A bus carrying U.S. passengers who were aboard the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess arrives at Haneda airport in Tokyo, before the passengers board a Kalitta airplane chartered by the U.S. government Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. The cruise ship was carrying nearly 3,500 passengers and crew members under quarantine. (Sadayuki Goto/Kyodo News via AP) "><figcaption> A bus carrying U.S. passengers who were aboard the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess arrives at Haneda airport in Tokyo, before the passengers board a Kalitta airplane chartered by the U.S. government Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. The cruise ship was carrying nearly 3,500 passengers and crew members under quarantine. (Sadayuki Goto/Kyodo News via AP) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-092672d2ee4c47552bf00952ef67346e.jpg" alt="Photo - A group of ambulances from the Solano EMS Cooperative stage at the visitor center at Travis Air Force Base, adjacent to Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. A group of Americans cut short a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo, to be whisked back to America. But they will have to spend another quarantine period at U.S. military facilities including Travis to make sure they don't have the new virus that's been sweeping across Asia. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) " title=" A group of ambulances from the Solano EMS Cooperative stage at the visitor center at Travis Air Force Base, adjacent to Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. A group of Americans cut short a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo, to be whisked back to America. But they will have to spend another quarantine period at U.S. military facilities including Travis to make sure they don't have the new virus that's been sweeping across Asia. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) "><figcaption> A group of ambulances from the Solano EMS Cooperative stage at the visitor center at Travis Air Force Base, adjacent to Fairfield, Calif., Sunday, Feb. 16, 2020. A group of Americans cut short a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo, to be whisked back to America. But they will have to spend another quarantine period at U.S. military facilities including Travis to make sure they don't have the new virus that's been sweeping across Asia. (AP Photo/Hector Amezcua) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-90948243fcc46359acdebe13ca82659d.jpg" alt="Photo - Buses carrying passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship leave a port in Yokohama, near Tokyo, Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. A group of Americans are cutting short a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo, to be whisked back to America. But they will have to spend another quarantine period at a U.S. military facility to make sure they don't have the new virus that's been sweeping across Asia. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) " title=" Buses carrying passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship leave a port in Yokohama, near Tokyo, Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. A group of Americans are cutting short a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo, to be whisked back to America. But they will have to spend another quarantine period at a U.S. military facility to make sure they don't have the new virus that's been sweeping across Asia. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) "><figcaption> Buses carrying passengers from the quarantined Diamond Princess cruise ship leave a port in Yokohama, near Tokyo, Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. A group of Americans are cutting short a 14-day quarantine on the Diamond Princess cruise ship in the port of Yokohama, near Tokyo, to be whisked back to America. But they will have to spend another quarantine period at a U.S. military facility to make sure they don't have the new virus that's been sweeping across Asia. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-cd0e4409c836da276032e5e021c22ed2.jpg" alt="Photo - In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, board a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) " title=" In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, board a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) "><figcaption> In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, board a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-e2733c712ca1cabf950dac998bb81655.jpg" alt="Photo - In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, Paul Molesky, right, and Cheryl Molesky, who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, film selfie video aboard a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) " title=" In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, Paul Molesky, right, and Cheryl Molesky, who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, film selfie video aboard a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) "><figcaption> In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, Paul Molesky, right, and Cheryl Molesky, who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, film selfie video aboard a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-cb08901a7b3c57759775ee7357e9fac4.jpg" alt="Photo - In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, board a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) " title=" In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, board a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) "><figcaption> In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, board a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-2a07ad32a3215ed38810d97a6f5b9764.jpg" alt="Photo - An airplane chartered by the U.S. government takes off at Haneda airport in Tokyo with U.S. passengers who were aboard the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess docked at Yokohama, Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. The cruise ship was carrying nearly 3,500 passengers and crew members under quarantine. (Sadayuki Goto/Kyodo News via AP) " title=" An airplane chartered by the U.S. government takes off at Haneda airport in Tokyo with U.S. passengers who were aboard the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess docked at Yokohama, Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. The cruise ship was carrying nearly 3,500 passengers and crew members under quarantine. (Sadayuki Goto/Kyodo News via AP) "><figcaption> An airplane chartered by the U.S. government takes off at Haneda airport in Tokyo with U.S. passengers who were aboard the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess docked at Yokohama, Monday, Feb. 17, 2020. The cruise ship was carrying nearly 3,500 passengers and crew members under quarantine. (Sadayuki Goto/Kyodo News via AP) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-17c42c355b2440653243414ecc16ab4c.jpg" alt="Photo - In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, board a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) " title=" In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, board a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) "><figcaption> In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, board a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-506597d06e96ad5105cb1d3e24cfc613.jpg" alt="Photo - In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, wait for the takeoff of a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) " title=" In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, wait for the takeoff of a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) "><figcaption> In this image from a video taken on Monday, Feb. 17, 2020, U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess, wait for the takeoff of a Kalitta Air plane bound for the U.S., at Haneda airport in Tokyo.(Cheryl and Paul Molesky via AP) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-e050e53e674e5559fba7dd13e7151b3e.jpg" alt="Photo - In this Friday, Feb. 7, 2020 photo, a passenger is helped off of a chartered 747 that arrived from Wuhan, China at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, in Texas. U.S. officials on Thursday, Feb. 13, announced the country's 15th confirmed case of the new coronavirus — an evacuee from China who had been transported on this flight and was under quarantine in Texas. The patient is now in isolation at a hospital and was reported in stable condition. (Billy Calzada/The San Antonio Express-News via AP) " title=" In this Friday, Feb. 7, 2020 photo, a passenger is helped off of a chartered 747 that arrived from Wuhan, China at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, in Texas. U.S. officials on Thursday, Feb. 13, announced the country's 15th confirmed case of the new coronavirus — an evacuee from China who had been transported on this flight and was under quarantine in Texas. The patient is now in isolation at a hospital and was reported in stable condition. (Billy Calzada/The San Antonio Express-News via AP) "><figcaption> In this Friday, Feb. 7, 2020 photo, a passenger is helped off of a chartered 747 that arrived from Wuhan, China at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, in Texas. U.S. officials on Thursday, Feb. 13, announced the country's 15th confirmed case of the new coronavirus — an evacuee from China who had been transported on this flight and was under quarantine in Texas. The patient is now in isolation at a hospital and was reported in stable condition. (Billy Calzada/The San Antonio Express-News via AP) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-a5f6720687213e18057c030f571ac57d.jpg" alt="Photo - In this Friday, Feb 7, 2020 photo, people arrive from Wuhan, China, aboard a chartered Boeing 747 at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in Texas. U.S. officials on Thursday, Feb. 13, announced the country's 15th confirmed case of the new coronavirus — an evacuee from China who had been transported on this flight and was under quarantine in Texas. The patient is now in isolation at a hospital and was reported in stable condition. (Billy Calzada/The San Antonio Express-News via AP) " title=" In this Friday, Feb 7, 2020 photo, people arrive from Wuhan, China, aboard a chartered Boeing 747 at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in Texas. U.S. officials on Thursday, Feb. 13, announced the country's 15th confirmed case of the new coronavirus — an evacuee from China who had been transported on this flight and was under quarantine in Texas. The patient is now in isolation at a hospital and was reported in stable condition. (Billy Calzada/The San Antonio Express-News via AP) "><figcaption> In this Friday, Feb 7, 2020 photo, people arrive from Wuhan, China, aboard a chartered Boeing 747 at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland in Texas. U.S. officials on Thursday, Feb. 13, announced the country's 15th confirmed case of the new coronavirus — an evacuee from China who had been transported on this flight and was under quarantine in Texas. The patient is now in isolation at a hospital and was reported in stable condition. (Billy Calzada/The San Antonio Express-News via AP) </figcaption></figure><figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-01c8b70581d8e11e541e076e3fb8310b.jpg" alt="Photo - U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess and officials wait for the takeoff of a Kalitta Air airplane bound for the U.S., Monday at Haneda airport in Tokyo. [Cheryl and Paul Molesky via The Associated Press] " title=" U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess and officials wait for the takeoff of a Kalitta Air airplane bound for the U.S., Monday at Haneda airport in Tokyo. [Cheryl and Paul Molesky via The Associated Press] "><figcaption> U.S. passengers who evacuated off the quarantined cruise ship the Diamond Princess and officials wait for the takeoff of a Kalitta Air airplane bound for the U.S., Monday at Haneda airport in Tokyo. [Cheryl and Paul Molesky via The Associated Press] </figcaption></figure>
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