Airline passenger brings first case of COVID-19 to Southeast town of Gustavus

The COVID-19 testing station at the Gustavus airport on June 12, 2020. (Photo courtesy of Melanie Lesh)
The COVID-19 testing station at the Gustavus airport on June 12, 2020. (Photo courtesy of Melanie Lesh)

The small Southeast Alaska community of Gustavus has its first confirmed case of COVID-19.

The case was detected at the Gustavus Airport when an Alaska Airlines passenger took the test after an incoming flight. The Gustavus Emergency Operations Center was notified on Friday.

The person is not an Alaska resident and appears to be asymptomatic. They are currently in self-isolation, and state officials are investigating the source of the virus.

Before the City of Gustavus learned that the virus had come to town, it planned on hosting a virtual town hall meeting about the possibility of COVID-19 in Gustavus. That’s still happening Friday evening.

On Friday, the state reported 15 new cases of Alaskans testing positive for the virus and seven non-residents. This week marked the highest active number of cases since the start of the pandemic.

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