Hong Kong's Centre for Health Protection (CHP) has identified a growing Covid-19 cluster in Hong Kong's Kwai Tsing Container Terminal, with many of the cases comprising workers at a stevedoring company.
CHP’s Communicable Disease Branch Head, Dr Chuang Shuk-kwan, said at a press conference on 16 August 2020 that as of that date, 55 people working at the container terminal were confirmed to have contracted the virus. Among them, 41 are staff of the Wang Kee Port Operation Services.
Dr Chuang explained that the resting room at Wang Kee’s premises may have caused the spread of the virus.
She said, “They have a resting room with some beds, toilets, and showers, and workers share those facilities and sometimes sleep there to rest overnight. So, it is just like a hostel or a big family (area where) people share items and sleep in the same place.
“That (arrangement) will contribute to the transmission (of Covid-19) because it is just like transmission within a family. If you share items, stay together and live together, then the chance of transmission is very high.”
She added that it is also plausible that some infected Wang Kee workers may have spread the virus by coming into contact with workers from other companies that operate at the container terminal, even though they are required to wear masks at work.
Dr Chuang continued, “So, the chance of transmission may be higher when they take off their masks during rest (time), having lunch, breakfast or showers, etc.”