Kathleen Reid, a passenger aboard the Grand Princess, which is ordered to remain off the coast of San Francisco and may have passengers with coronavirus, details life on the vessel, but says 'nobody has just gone screaming mad yet'.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) KATHLEEN REID, 67-YEAR-OLD CRUISE SHIP PASSENGER FROM GRANDBURY, TEXAS, SAYING: "The captain announced over the intercom that we would not be going to Ensanada and that two of the passengers on the previous cruise on this ship had tested positive to the coronavirus.
We would be going straight on in to SF." This is what life is like for 67-year-old Kathleen Reid aboard the Grand Princess, which has been ordered by health officials to remain off the coast of San Francisco.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) KATHLEEN REID, 67-YEAR-OLD CRUISE SHIP PASSENGER FROM GRANDBURY, TEXAS, SAYING: "People are I'm sure a little anxious but nobody has just gone screaming mad yet." Reuters spoke to her on Thursday over the phone, where she detailed preventative measures being taken on board the possibly tainted ship.
At least 35 people developed flu-like symptoms aboard the vessel, which has been linked to two confirmed cases of COVID-19.
First, the food buffet was shut down.
Then the ocean liner's gym, bar, casino and boutiques were closed, with passengers urged to keep to themselves.
Finally, they were confined to their staterooms. (SOUNDBITE) (English) KATHLEEN REID, 67-YEAR-OLD CRUISE SHIP PASSENGER FROM GRANDBURY, TEXAS, SAYING: "They're cleaning and wiping things down, they had set up the buffet with originally just an open buffet but then they closed that off and they serve all the food to you so that nobody is coming in contact with any of the food.
They are wearing gloves, nobody is wearing masks but everybody appears to be in an abundance of caution." On Thursday, the National Guard flew in coronavirus testing kits to the cruise ship.
Fewer than 100 passengers and crew were to be tested, and results take about 24 hours.
President Donald Trump Friday, signing into law a $8.3 billion dollar measure that provides emergency funding to combat the spread of coronavirus, weighed in on the situation on the vessel.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP SAYING: "We have big news on the ship.
A lot of things are happening on the ship.
People are being tested right now, and I just spoke to the Governor of California, Gavin Newsom, we had a good conversation, we're both working on the ship together.
It's close to 5,000 people.
It's a big ship, so we're doing testing on those people." Like the Diamond Princess, the liner held in quarantine off Japan last month, the Grand Princess is owned by a unit of Carnival Corp, the world's largest cruise operator.
In a Reuters exclusive, officials said the U.S. is considering ways to discourage some travelers from taking cruises as part of efforts to limit spread of coronavirus, though officials say the risk of contracting the virus in the U.S. remains "low."