Coronavirus reaches end of earth as first outbreak hits Antarctica

Dubai - The infected individuals were stationed at a research base on the continent, reports say.

(Photo from used for illustrative purpose)
(Photo from used for illustrative purpose)

By Web Report

Published: Tue 22 Dec 2020, 2:34 PM

Last updated: Wed 23 Dec 2020, 7:32 AM

After managing to steer clear of the Covid-19 pandemic for over nine months, Antarctica has reportedly recorded its first set of coronavirus cases.

A total of 36 people stationed at Chile’s General Bernardo O’Higgins Riquelme research base in Antarctica tested positive for the virus, Newsweek reported, citing “multiple Spanish-language reports”.

With this, the Covid-19 pandemic has spread through all seven continents on Earth.

Those who tested positive include 26 members of the Chilean Army and 10 civilian maintenance contractors.

According to 24 Horas, the Chilean Army said in a statement: “Thanks to the timely preventive action, it was possible to relieve said personnel, who, after being subjected to a medical control and the administration of a PCR test ... turned out to be positive for Covid-19.”

At least some of the infected individuals were said to have experienced symptoms before testing positive for the virus, according to the Associated Press.

The Newsweek report added: “All 36 have since been evacuated to the city of Punta Arenas in Southern Chile, where they are reported to be under isolation and in good condition. The station personnel were replaced by a new crew who had been quarantined and tested negative prior to their journey.”

Antarctica has no permanent residents but usually hosts between 1,000 to 5,000 people — mostly scientists and support staff stationed at research bases scattered throughout the continent.

More news from