Less than 48 hours after health authorities reported that the island had recorded its 29th case of the coronavirus (COVID-19), they said Wednesday that two more cases had been recorded as investigations continue into a possible community spread by persons illegally entering St. Lucia by boat from the neighbouring French island of Martinique.
Police in a statement said that six St. Lucians were being held on suspicion of having entered the island illegally from the French island after a Marine Police vessel intercepted two vessels.
All six men are to be taken to quarantine, law enforcement officials told reporters.
However, one of the detainees is reported to have told police that he and four others left St. Lucia in their vessel in response to a distress call from a friend in the second boat, which had encountered problems.
Prime Minister Allen Chastanet in a television broadcast on Sunday night, said he was convinced that the 29th COVID-19 case was the result of an infection transmitted by someone who had entered the island illegally.
The Ministry of Health confirmed that two people had tested positive for the virus pushing the total to 31.
“The individuals are a couple, a 38 year old female and a 47 year old male of Castries. They both developed respiratory signs and symptoms which led them to seek care at a Community Respiratory Clinic on Monday October 12, 2020 where they were treated for their symptoms and tested for COVID-19.
“At that point they did not report risk exposure to COVID-19,” the ministry said, adding “their son who is a secondary school student shall be assessed and tested for COVID-19 and placed in quarantine..
“The class mates and teachers shall also be assessed and will be kept in home quarantine until his test results are received. Contact tracing has commenced for the possible contacts of these two new cases,” the ministry added.