Cruise company denies ship that visited New Zealand locked down in Australia

A cruise ship company is denying Australian media reports about a possible case of coronavirus on a vessel docked in Sydney.

The Australian reported on Friday that the Norwegian Jewel was briefly locked down while a Singaporean passenger was tested for coronavirus. It is unclear where the passenger boarded the ship, but he had fallen ill with a respiratory illness. The outlet said he was tested as a precaution and taken from the ship. 

New South Wales Health announced all passengers were tested as a precaution despite none of them being in China in the past two weeks.

It reports there was no sign of the disease on board.

"There were three routine medical transfers, none related to respiratory illness," it said in a statement.

One person was tested for a respiratory illness on board and the results are expected on Friday afternoon.

"There is no indication the person is at particular risk for CoVID-19 and at this point, there is no concern for other passengers or people."

The ship was in New Zealand earlier this week on a 10 day tour before travelling to Sydney on Friday. More than 2350 guests were believed to be on board, with a crew of 1069.

The Norwegian Cruise Line company is denying anyone was ill, however, saying there have "various false media reports related to an illness onboard our ship".

"There is absolutely no truth to this. The vessel remains in operation, and all guests onboard are in good health," a statement said.

A further statement said that during the ship's journey from Auckland to Sydney, a few guests experienced a "stomach-related illness".

"To mitigate any impact of this rare occurrence, we implemented stringent sanitation procedures. As such, upon the ship’s return to Sydney on Friday, February 14, 2020, a thorough inspection and rigorous cleaning and disinfection of the ship and terminal were conducted," a spokesperson said. 

"We have no guests with any respiratory related illness on board."

The ship continues to be scheduled to depart on a 14-day cruise later on Friday.

According to the Norwegian Cruise Line website, 10-day tours of New Zealand, which leave from Auckland, visit Tauranga, Napier, Wellington, and Dunedin among other regions.

There are currently 15 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Australia. More than 60,000 people worldwide have the deadly illness, while 1300 have died.