The Marina Bay Sands (MBS) casino resort (pictured) in Singapore said in a Monday statement it was “temporarily closing” its casino for “deep cleaning” with effect from 12:00 hours that day.
“This is a precautionary measure after two of our casino staff tested positive for Covid-19,” added the announcement.
The news came on the same day it was announced the planned May 26 launch of a Hong Kong to Singapore air travel bubble had been “deferred” due to what Singapore’s Ministry of Transport called the “evolving Covid-19 situation in Singapore.”
Marina Bay Sands stressed that the rest of its complex would stay in operation, despite the temporary shuttering of the casino, and that the ongoing use of the other facilities would be on the basis of “revised capacities and stricter measures across the property,” until June 13.
The venue – run by a unit of United States-based Las Vegas Sands Corp, also the parent of Macau operator Sands China Ltd – said it would “provide an update as soon as a reopening time is confirmed” for the casino.
The property said the affected casino staff last were at work on the morning of May 15.
“Other employees who are close contacts have been identified and placed on stay home notice or quarantine order,” said the resort.
“We are also working closely with the Ministry of Health in contact tracing efforts for guests who may have interacted with the employees,” added Marina Bay Sands.
The resort stated it would “continue to be vigilant on all fronts,” including via use of “stringent cleaning regimes, safe distancing measures across property, and regular Covid-19 testing of frontline staff”.
Singapore’s Ministry of Health said in a Monday update that a 36-year-old male national of Malaysia “who works as a dealer at Marina Bay Sands casino,” had been confirmed on May 16 as having Covid-19 infection, and that he was part of what the ministry termed a “Marina Bay Sands dealer cluster”.
The other confirmed case was a “35 year-old male Singaporean who works as a dealer at Marina Bay Sands casino,” added the ministry. He had a positive test result for Covid-19 infection on 16 May.
There was no suggestion from the release that more than two casino workers at Marina Bay Sands had been infected.
The ministry noted that as of 12 noon on Monday, there had been confirmation of 21 new cases of locally-transmitted Covid-19 infection in Singapore.
Ten of those cases were linked to previous ones, and 11 were “currently unlinked”.
As of the same date and time, Singapore had 459 active cases, 61,123 cases discharged, and 31 fatalities.
Singapore’s Ministry of Transport said regarding the planned air travel bubble with Hong Kong that the two places would “closely monitor the public health situation in both places and review the new launch date” for such a scheme.
Such review would occur “towards the end” of what Singapore termed its Phase 2 (Heightened Alert), a reference to stepped up local countermeasures to the spread of Covid-19.
Those steps started on Sunday, and are scheduled to run until June 13, according to a statement on the Singapore government’s main website.
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