COVID-19 infects 9 workers at Juneau seafood processor

Workers remove the bones from salmon fillets at Alaska Glacier Seafoods’ Auke Bay processing plant (David Purdy/KTOO)

Nine cases of COVID-19 have been linked to a seafood processor in Juneau.

According to a release from the City and Borough of Juneau on Friday, eight close contacts of a resident who tested positive for the virus earlier this month also tested positive this week.

The cases are associated with Alaska Glacier Seafoods. Four of the new cases are residents and four are non-residents. All of the individuals are isolating and their close contacts are quarantining.

The first employee started experiencing symptoms July 4 and immediately isolated at home. That individual was reported as positive to the state on July 14 and has since been classified as getting infected through community spread. That means they didn’t travel recently or have close contact with anyone known to have the virus.

The city says Alaska Glacier Seafoods followed its internal COVID-19 response plan by quarantining close contacts from the same work crew a few days after the first employee became symptomatic.

Seventeen close contacts of the initial employee were tested on July 12, and eight of those tests came back positive this week.

The person with the initial case has since recovered and some of the others may soon be considered recovered as well.

The company is awaiting the results of another 113 employees tested by Capital City Fire/Rescue on Wednesday.

Alaska Glacier Seafoods Business Manager Kristie Erickson said by phone on Friday that no other employees tested positive before this.

She said the company has been working closely with Juneau Public Health Nursing and is doing everything it can to contain the outbreak.

This is a developing story and may be updated as information becomes available.