Updated 11am, 23/7: Adeje Ayuntamiento has announced that it has closed Playa de Troya I while the patera occupants are dealt with on the beach by security and emergency personnel including Cruz Roja. The council stresses that everything is being done according to the protocols in place both for the arrival of these craft and for dealing with potential covid19 cases. The beach will remain closed until the processing is over and the beach has been cleaned and all the anti-covid protocols complied with. The council confirms that all on board appear in good health, with neither minors nor pregnant women among the occupants.
Original post 23 July: There seem to have been more of them this season than formerly by any reasonable counting method, and only yesterday five were said to be headed for the Canaries at the same time. And this morning a patera with around 30 on board has arrived in the main tourist area of south Tenerife, reaching Playa Troya in San Eugenio shortly after 7am. At present it is unknown whether this was one of the five detected on their way, nor is it known yet if any will test positive for covid19.
This is a story that’s gaining arms and legs because of the numbers involved, and the number of those already arrived who have tested positive. At the weekend when I do my weekly round up of covid cases in the Canaries, we will see a significant jump in numbers, and a good proportion of those will be immigrants from the pateras. The situation is indeed so concerning that the Canarian Government is in active discussion about how to count cases here, and has suggested that the patera arrivals should not be included at all.
Their stance is supported by Ashotel, but the fact remains that the cases are actually here, and that there are people here looking after the immigrants and processing their refugee status claims, even if the incomers themselves are isolated, even offshore. Those people themselves have homes and families with whom they are in contact. Clearly, these islands are affected even if numbers are massaged only to report real cases originating in the islands.
I imagine there will be a few updates to this post. Meanwhile the arrival of these latest arrivals is still, as of 10am, being processed.