Steamship Authority terminal employee tests positive for COVID-19

Posted: May 19, 2020

FALMOUTH, Mass. (May 19, 2020) – A Steamship Authority employee assigned to the Nantucket terminal has tested positive for COVID-19. The Authority is working closely with public health officials on Nantucket and in Barnstable County to guide its efforts to share information and public health recommendations with passengers and Steamship employees who may have come into contact with the COVID-19 positive employee, who last worked at the terminal on Monday, May 11, 2020.

On Friday, May 15, 2020, immediately after receiving notification that the employee was being tested, the Authority initiated a thorough cleaning and disinfection of the Nantucket terminal. The Steamship Authority is working with its employees at the Nantucket terminal to utilize the drive-through COVID-19 evaluation site at Nantucket Cottage Hospital to determine if any further testing is warranted.

As the employee is one of many assigned to Nantucket who commutes from the mainland, the Authority has also secured the services of Moran Environmental Recovery to perform a deep cleaning with hospital-grade disinfectants of both vessels assigned to the Nantucket route. The M/V Eagle and the M/V Gay Head will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected while they are berthed in Hyannis this evening. The Authority’s crews already take extra precautionary measures regarding cleaning and do a thorough job on vessel interiors during and in between trips to disinfect all high-touch areas, including hand railings, table tops, door handles, seats, faucets, and toilets; the services provided by Moran Environmental will be in addition to the ongoing extraordinary work.

The M/V Sankaty will run in place of the M/V Eagle for that vessel’s scheduled 8:00 p.m. departure from Hyannis tonight and 6:30 a.m. departure Wednesday from Nantucket to accommodate these cleaning and disinfecting measures.

Authority staff are in the process of notifying the crews who were assigned to those vessels, as well as employees in the Hyannis terminal, when the COVID -19 positive employee traveled to determine if any of them require being placed in quarantine or being tested. Staff are also working to determine if the employee came into contact with any passengers and, if so, to notify those individuals as well.

General Manager Robert B. Davis extended his gratitude to the employee who tested positive for following the company’s protocols and immediately informing a supervisor about their health and COVID-19 test so appropriate action could be taken. As a reminder, employees have been instructed that, under no circumstances, should they come to work while they are sick, both for their safety as well as the safety of the crew and traveling public. Additionally, employees have been instructed to wear cloth face coverings, to wash their hands frequently and use hand sanitizer.

“Our thoughts and best wishes are with our employee for a speedy and complete recovery,” Davis said.