Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Ebola Scare At Gatwick As Passenger Collapses and Dies Getting Off Sierra Leone Flight

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Airport staff were terrified of a possible Ebola outbreak after a passenger from Sierra Leone collapsed and died as she got off a plane at Gatwick on Saturday. However, around 11pm on Sunday, the Department of Health said that tests for the deadly Ebola virus on the woman had proved negative.

For the anxious 36 hours while they waited for the test results to come back, workers said they were very scared. One said: “Everyone’s just ­petrified.

The woman, said to be 72, became ill on the gangway after she left a Gambia Bird jet with 128 passengers on board. She died in hospital hours later and tests were then carried out to see if she had the disease.

The plane was quarantined as ­officials desperately tried to trace everyone who had been in contact with the woman. A shocked staff member told reporters;

“We’ve all seen how many people have died from Ebola, especially in Sierra Leone, and it’s terrifying. The woman was sweating buckets and vomiting.

“Paramedics arrived to try and help her. The next thing everybody was there… emergency crews, airfield operations, even immigration.

“They closed down the jet bridge and put the aircraft into quarantine. They took everyone’s details, even the guy who fuels the aircraft.”

The plane carrying the woman came from Freetown in Sierra Leone – a country with the highest number of victims from the disease.

It stopped at Banjul in The Gambia before landing in Gatwick at 8.15am on Saturday after a five-hour flight.

Public Health England tried to allay fears of an Ebola ­breakout in Britain, saying the woman showed no ­symptoms during the flight. One ­official added:

“Public Health England is aware a passenger arriving on a flight from The Gambia that landed at Gatwick airport on Saturday fell ill shortly after disembarking.

"The passenger was taken to hospital and sadly died. In line with standard ­procedures, tests are being undertaken to determine the cause of death. The patient’s symptoms suggest that Ebola is very unlikely but as a precaution this is one of the tests being undertaken.

The patient was not symptomatic on the plane and therefore there is no risk of Ebola being passed on to either flight crew or other passengers.

England has world class health care and disease control systems which are active permanently, ­regularly tested and proven to be effective. As such, if the UK does see a case of imported Ebola, this will not result in an outbreak in this country.”

Via Mirror UK

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