Trenton: Two planes brought home 213 Canadians from Wuhan in China — the epicentre of the Novel Coronavirus outbreak.
“Yesterday [Friday], we welcomed home 174 Canadians and their family members travelling on a Government of Canada-chartered plane, as well as 39 who travelled on a second flight led by the United States from Wuhan, China,” said a media release from the Public Health Agency of Canada .
The repatriated Canadians and their family members were met at Canadian Forces Base Trenton by Canada Border Services Agency officers, and were thoroughly assessed by quarantine officers from the Public Health Agency of Canada.
They will stay in isolation at CFB Trenton for 14 days, out of an abundance of caution, to reduce the risk of spread of the virus. Of the 213 returning Canadians and their family members, none have exhibited symptoms of the novel coronavirus, said the agency.
Second flight ready
The agency said a second and final chartered flight is planned to transport Canadians from Wuhan to Canada.
It did not specify how many Canadians will the second flight bring home.
“We welcome the leadership of the World Health Organization and continue to work with our international partners to support the global initiatives that are helping to strengthen health systems and to improve early detection of viruses such as the novel coronavirus. We will also continue working with provinces and territories in the days and weeks to come, as well as continuing to liaise with Canadian consular officials to assist other Canadians who may be affected, the agency said.
It reminded Canadians that the risk of spread of this virus within Canada remains low at this time. “We have measures in place to protect the health and safety of Canadians here at home and those who are returning.”
“The Government of Canada welcomes the safe return of Canadians and their families from Wuhan, China. Two thirds of Canadians who were seeking to leave Wuhan have now been evacuated, and we continue to work tirelessly to assist all Canadians seeking to return home. I’d like to especially thank our American partners for their support with these efforts,” said François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Foreign Affairs.