Some Alabamians stuck in Peru amid growing pandemic

(Source: WSFA)
(Source: WSFA)(WTVY News 4)
Published: Mar. 20, 2020 at 10:42 AM CDT
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Several Alabamians are among hundreds of Americans stuck inside Peru after that South American country closed its borders in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ala. Gov. Kay Ivey said her office is aware of four citizens unable to leave the country. They were traveling in a group that included others from Georgia, Mississippi, and North Carolina.

Mobile television station WPMI reported the number of Alabamians stuck in Peru at six and identified them as being affiliated with the University of South Alabama. They were in Peru to perform medical care as part of a program.

“The Governor’s Office has aided them by providing contacts, and folks are working to resolve the situation,” Ivey’s office said Thursday.

Peruvian President Martín Vizcarra issued a 15-day nationwide state of emergency Sunday in response to the coronavirus outbreak and flights were canceled almost immediately.

The U.S. Embassy issued a security alert for Americans, telling them to seek lodging in Peru if they were unable to reschedule their flights.

A family in neighboring Mississippi told Biloxi television station WLOX they were on a celebratory trip had been planned for more than a year and they had been monitoring the coronavirus but caught off guard by the quarantine.

After a lockdown was announced, the couple scrambled to find a flight before a 24-hour deadline to get out of the country was up. While they were successful in booking a flight, they weren’t able to make it out of the country.

Peru has reported more than 70 confirmed cases of the illness so far.

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