First virus-free guests abandon blocked Spanish island hotel

ADEJE, SPAIN — Some guests have started to leave a locked-down hotel in Spain’s Tenerife island after undergoing screening for a new virus that is infecting hundreds worldwide.

Reporters at the scene saw several families and couples being screened for their temperatures on Thursday morning by what appeared to be medical personnel wearing protective outfits.

The holidaymakers wore face masks and appeared to sign documents before boarding a passengers’ van loaded with suitcases.

Health officials in Spain’s Canary Islands said that 130 of the hundreds of tourists at the H10 Costa Adeje Palace hotel, many of them foreigners, would be leaving in batches.

The cleared vacationers, from 11 different countries including Spain, had arrived at the hotel on Monday, after four people who tested positive for the COVID-19 disease had already been hospitalized.

Nobody else at the premises, whether guests or hotel employees, has been found infected, authorities said. The remaining 600 holidaymakers at the hotel, from a total of 25 countries, are to stay in quarantine for 14 days.

Spain has experienced a significant uptick in the number of infections this week, from the two initial cases earlier this month who had been already released from hospital to 25 as of Friday morning.

Although most cases have been connected to the new coronavirus cluster in northern Italy, authorities are investigating what was the source of contagion for three of the newest patients, including a 77-year-old in serious condition, who had not travelled abroad.

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