Military called to Winter Olympics after illness outbreak

Published On: February 6, 2018 03:27 PM NPT By: Agencies

Nine hundred military personnel have been called in to address a shortfall in security at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang after illness resulted in the quarantine of 1,200 staff.

The local organising committee for the 2018 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the POCOG, on Tuesday confirmed 41 private security workforce personnel had reported ill, with the symptoms pointing to norovirus.

All 1,200 people staying in the affected accommodation have been asked to remain there until there are no further cases.

POCOG said in a statement: "To address the shortfall in security workforce due to the isolation, 900 military personnel have been deployed to take over the work of the civil safety personnel.

"They will work across 20 venues until all affected workforce are able to return to duty."

The 41 staff members' symptoms of headaches, stomach pain and diarrhoea, may be related to norovirus, the Gangwon Province Health and Environment Research Centre said.

All the affected security personnel are staying at the Horeb Youth Centre, Jinbu, Pyeongchang, with an investigation underway to discover the source of the outbreak, POCOG said.

The Korea Centre for Disease Control and Prevention and POCOG are working together to manage the situation.

"Those found with the virus symptoms will be sent to hospital and those that do not show symptoms will continue to be isolated in the Youth Centre until there are no further cases," the POCOG statement added/

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