COVID-19: Colleagues isolating after Hawke's Bay Airport worker tests positive

A staff member at Hawke's Bay Airport has tested positive for COVID-19.

The staffer works for the airport's corporate office, and most of their colleagues are isolating.

The positive case will not disrupt flights, as airline staff are not affected and the airport is operating under the same procedures as all other New Zealand airports managing the red traffic light setting.

On Friday morning, the Ministry of Health notified that anyone at Hawke's Bay Airport on Monday, 24 January, between 5.30am and 6.25am and on Tuesday, 25 January between 9am and 9.30am should self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms for 10 days.

If symptoms were to develop, they were told to get a test and stay at home until they received a negative test result.

That same day, a staff member who was on annual leave that day started to feel unwell.

The person immediately got a test and self-isolated with their family. Results of that test were positive for COVID-19.

While it has not been confirmed, it is expected the case will be Omicron.

While at the airport earlier that week, the staff member had been following all safety protocols, including wearing a mask, sanitising and social distancing, and at that time did not feel unwell.

All staff who are considered close contacts of the positive case are self-isolating and working from home, and have all received negative results for initial tests.

They are currently awaiting results for day five tests and all team members are asymptomatic.

The airport's acting chief executive Stephanie Murphy said operations at the airport should not be impacted by the positive case.

"We've put a huge effort into contingency planning for a situation like this, including separating our corporate team from our Airport Fire Service and carefully following Ministry of Health advice, to ensure operations can be seamless if we had a case," she said in a statement.

"Unfortunately, within a matter of weeks positive cases will likely become the norm in our region. We are doing everything we can to ensure our team, other airport workers and passengers coming through the airport are as safe as possible given the circumstances.

"Our focus is now on ensuring our staff member and their family have all the support they need to get through this illness.

"We'd like to thank local Air New Zealand staff in particular who have been incredibly supportive in ensuring seamless service at the terminal."

Current locations of interest in and around Hawke's Bay Airport

Flight NZ5008 Napier to Auckland

Tuesday 25 January 9.55am-11am

You are a close contact if you were seated in row 7, 8, 9, 10 or 11. Self-isolate, test immediately and on day 5 after you were exposed.

Bay Espresso Café and Bar, Hawke's Bay Airport

Tuesday 25 January 9am-9.30am

Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms for 10 days after exposure. If symptoms develop, get a test and stay at home until receiving a negative test result.

Flight NZ5771 Napier - Christchurch

Monday 24 January 6.25am-8am

Close contact - Self-isolate, test immediately and on day 5 after exposure

Hawke's Bay Airport

111 Main North Road, Westshore, Napier 4110

Monday 24 January 5.30am-6.25am

Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms for 10 days after exposure. If symptoms develop, get a test and stay at home until you get a negative test result.