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Published: 17:36, October 08, 2021 | Updated: 17:56, October 08, 2021
HK airport worker is first local virus case in almost 2 months
By Wang Zhan
Published:17:36, October 08, 2021 Updated:17:56, October 08, 2021 By Wang Zhan

An aircraft operated by Cathay Pacific Airways approaches Hong Kong International Airport in Hong Kong, Aug 10, 2021. (PHOTO/BLOOMBERG)

HONG KONG – Hong Kong reported two new COVID-19 infections on Friday, including one local case with an unknown source of origin, snapping a 51-day streak of zero infection in the financial hub.

The local case involved an airport worker, who also carried the L452R variant, Chuang Shuk-kwan, head of the Centre for Health Protection’s communicable disease branch, said at a briefing in the afternoon.

More than 400 residents of a Sha Tin building where the man lives were tested for COVID-19 overnight. Golden Glory Court of Sha Tin’s Golden Lion Garden was designated as a “restricted area” at 7 pm Thursday for compulsory testing of all residents.

The government completed the exercise early Friday morning and the results all returned negative.

The man, who remained asymptomatic, had no recent travel history and mainly worked at the Hong Kong’s airport SuperTerminal 1, which handles air cargo

The man, who remained asymptomatic, had no recent travel history and mainly worked at the Hong Kong’s airport SuperTerminal 1, which handles air cargo.

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He had been fully vaccinated with the Sinovac shot and last worked on Thursday, Chuang said. He was likely infected with the Delta strain, said Chuang.

“There’s still risk of spread into the community,” Chuang said. “Hopefully we can control it.”

Hong Kong has managed to avoid local transmission of Delta – one of the only places in the world still free of the highly infectious mutation.

His close contacts as well as more than 90 of his colleagues who shared the same common room with him at the airport have been sent to quarantine, Chuang said. None of them have tested positive for the virus so far.

Thousands of employees who work at SuperTerminal 1 are also subject to compulsory testing, Chuang added.

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There were also few than six preliminary positive cases on Friday, Chuang said.

The man’s daughter has shown symptoms but tested negative for the virus, Chuang said. Classes at Tung Wah Group of Hospitals Chan King Har Kindergarten, where the girl attends, have been suspended.

Vaccine records meet UK rules

On another development, the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region’s government said that the UK government would start to recognize Hong Kong's vaccination records from 4 am on Oct 4, 2021.

The move came after the HKSAR government updated the local vaccination records by adding extra information to the records, such as the date or birth and sex of the vaccine recipient, as well as the manufacturer of the vaccine the person received.

Hong Kong has fully vaccinated 63 percent of the eligible population, while some 4.5 million people, or 67 percent of those eligible for the shot, have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

With inputs from Agencies

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