Saudi man, granddaughter stopped after showing MERS signs

August 11, 2017 12:30
The 48-year-old man and his eight-year-old granddaughter arrived at Hung Hom Station at 6:18 p.m. on train Z815 from Guangzhou. Photo: Xinhua

Hong Kong health authorities stopped a Saudi Arabian man and his granddaughter after they showed symptoms of the Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). 

They were taken to Queen Elizabeth Hospital after arriving in Hong Kong from Guangzhou, news website reports.

The 48-year-old man and the eight-year-old girl were stopped at the Port Health Office with flu-like symptoms. They had arrived at Hung Hom Station at 6:18 p.m. on train Z815 from Guangzhou East Railway Station.

Preliminary investigations showed the two had not been in contact recently with livestock or camels -- the main carriers of the virus. However, they are expected to be kept in hospital for at least two weeks until the symptoms have disappeared. 

The Centre for Health Protection warned travelers to the Middle East to avoid farms, farmland or any place with camels.

Also, it asked travel agencies to drop camel rides from their customers' itineraries.

The two patients occupied seats 51 and 57 in the seventh compartment of the train.

Although the train had left the station when the two were discovered, it is understood that the affected compartment was later disinfected.

The MTR said anyone who thinks they might have been exposed should see a doctor.

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