The Omicron worry is spreading across Europe. Hundreds of passengers who arrived in Amsterdam on two planes from South Africa on Friday are reportedly sick with COVID, according to Dutch health officials, who are performing additional tests to check if anyone is afflicted with the recently found Omicron coronavirus type.
On Friday, around 600 passengers landed at Amsterdam’s Schiphol Airport on two KLM flights, only to be met by hours of delays and testing due to fears about a new virus type. The Dutch health ministry projected that there could be roughly 85 positive cases among the passengers based on preliminary tests.
Omicron pose great threat as it is a highly mutant Covid Virus
“Travelers who test positive will be placed in isolation at a hotel near or at Schiphol,” health officials stated in a statement.
“We are investigating the positive test findings as rapidly as possible to see if they are the new variation of concern, now known as ‘Omicron.'”
“Of the positive test results, we are researching as quickly as possible whether they are the new variant of concern, now named ‘Omicron‘.”
The Dutch government banned all air travel from southern Africa early on Friday. Health Minister Hugo de Jonge said that passengers already en route to the Netherlands would have to undergo testing and quarantine upon arrival.
A spokesperson for the health authorities in Kennemerland, the Dutch region that oversees Schiphol, said the positive cases were being analysed by a Dutch academic medical hospital to determine whether they are the new strain.
The Dutch government separately on Friday announced the nighttime closure of bars, restaurants and most stores as it grapples with a record-breaking wave of Covid-19 cases that is swamping its healthcare system.
The Dutch government has restricted all forms of air travel.