18 November 2022 NSF Coronavirus Update

National Science Foundation sent out the following updated NSF Coronavirus Update email on 18 November:

NSF Office of Polar Programs message regarding pause in deployments to Antarctica
NSF Logo
Following up on the National Science Foundation's announcement on Nov. 5, 2022 regarding a pause on all travel to Antarctica, we regret those who are impacted by this change in deployments. If you have any questions, please contact your Program Officer. Regular updates on the situation can be found on the NSF Coronavirus Information page under Antarctic COVID Containment Updates.

The 17 November update from the above linked information page is:

November 17, 2022 -- Following the two-week pause on travel, McMurdo station has had zero (0) new cases identified in the last four days. There are 29 total active cases, including those who have tested positive in the last 10 days. As a result of the decrease in positivity rates, the U.S. National Science Foundation will resume modified entry plans to Antarctica. Beginning no sooner than Saturday, November 19, those who were already in Christchurch awaiting deployment when the pause was implemented will transit to McMurdo station after two negative Rapid Antigen Tests (RAT). Those bound for South Pole or deep field camps will enter the 5-day isolation period and test again before proceeding to their destination from McMurdo station.

The safety and well-being of our researchers and staff continues to be NSF's top priority. Unfortunately, the steps needed to protect those already on the ice, and future arrivals will impact deployed research projects in Antarctica.

During the coming weeks, NSF will be adjusting deployment plans for the season and will continue to monitor the number of positive cases so we can respond accordingly.

Note that flights from Christchurch to McMurdo resumed late in the week ending 19 November 2022--Bill.