Cabinet of the BVI government has approved an order to lock down the sister island of Jost Van Dyke, effective today, amid COVID-19 reports.
Minister for Health Carvin Malone subsequently made the order under Section 13 of the Public Health Act.
According to the document detailing order, the purpose of the lockdown is to guard against the spread of COVID-19 “and the probable consequences associated with the detection of COVID-19 in a person residing or visiting Jost Van Dyke”.
As a result, the Health Emergency Operation Centre recommended that a number of measures be taken, including a full 24-hour lockdown on the island until July 28.
“All persons visiting or residing on the island of Jost Van Dyke shall be quarantined for a period of seven days for 24 hours a day from Tuesday 21st day of July 2020 at 1 am. until 5:01 am on the 28th day of July, 2020 subject to such conditions as stipulated in the Health Emergency Operation Centre Guidelines,” it stated.
“No person shall be on the streets, and every person shall remain confined to their place of residence (inclusive of their yard space) for the period specified,” the document further said.
Cease all activity, traffic to island
Cabinet also decided that all activity to the island must cease immediately, unless given permission by a relevant authority.
“No person or vessel shall travel to or from Jost Van Dyke, except with the permission of the Minister for Health and Social Development in consultation with the Joint Task Force comprising of the Royal Virgin Islands Police Force, HM Customs and the Immigration Department,” it read.
In the meantime, all persons residing on Jost Van Dyke or who have visited the island recently will be subjected to robust contact tracing.
Additionally, the Ministry of Health and the BVI Health Services Authority will conducting COVID-19 community testing.
In the meantime, the lockdown comes days after reports that an airline passenger who travelled from the territory to St Vincent on July 15 was swabbed on arrival in St Vincent and tested positive for COVID-19.