Quarantined cruise ship passengers arrive at Dobbins after coronavirus outbreak

Two planes will carry 271 passengers from Oakland, California to Marietta at Dobbins Air Reserve Base.

The first passengers from a cruise ship hit by coronavirus have arrived in Georgia to be quarantined at Dobbins Air Reserve Base.

Passengers including 34 Georgians and dozens more from other states touched touched down early Wednesday morning. More could be on the way.

COMPLETE COVERAGE: Coronavirus in Georgia

NEW VIDEO: The first wave of quarantined passengers from a cruise ship hit by the coronavirus has arrived at Dobbins Air...

Posted by WSB-TV on Wednesday, March 11, 2020

A total of 21 people aboard the cruise ship have tested positive for the COVID-19 infection, Vice President Mike Pence said Friday during a Coronavirus Task Force press briefing. Of those, 19 were crew members and two were passengers.

Asymptomatic passengers were transferred to the base, officials have said.

“Prior to arriving here, the passengers were medically screened by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention,” said Col. Craig McPIke, Dobbins installation commander. “The passengers who were asymptomatic were transferred here and other federal military installations for COVID-19 testing and quarantine.”

The first  quarantined passengers from the Grand Princess cruise ship arrive at Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Marietta early Wednesday morning.
The first quarantined passengers from the Grand Princess cruise ship arrive at Dobbins Air Reserve Base in Marietta early Wednesday morning.

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

Credit: Channel 2 Action News

“Should any individuals be identified as ill during their quarantine period, the Department of Health & Human Services, the lead federal agency, has procedures in place to transport them to a local civilian hospital,” the statement continued. “CDC is fully responsible for all aspects of the quarantine operation, and Dobbins personnel will have no contact with these passengers. By providing this support, Dobbins ARB is helping to protect the health of Americans by preventing the spread of the virus.”

As of Tuesday evening, the state Department of Health said that there were 22 confirmed and presumed cases of COVID-19 in Georgia, but that number is expected to change daily.

RELATED: Georgia races to respond to coronavirus as number of possible cases rise to 22

The six confirmed diagnoses have been reported in Fulton County, Cobb, Polk and Floyd counties. Sixteen presumptive positive cases, meaning yet to be verified by the CDC, have been reported in Charlton, Fulton, Cobb, DeKalb, Gwinnett, Fayette and Cherokee counties.

The case in Charlton, a southeast Georgia county on the state line with Florida, was the first south of metro Atlanta reported in Georgia.

— Staff reporters Helena Olivero, Greg Bluestein and Jeremy Redmon contributed to this article.