The ship was carrying 3533 people, including at least four Australians.
At this stage it’s unclear if the four Australians on-board are among the confirmed cases.
Pence said the federal government is working with California officials on a plan to bring the ship to a non-commercial port this weekend and the 3,500 passengers and crew members will be tested for the virus.
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Friday’s test results come amid evidence the vessel was the breeding ground for a deadly cluster of at least 10 cases during its previous voyage.
Coronavirus test kits were delivered to the ship on Thursday and samples were collected from 45 people, Princess Cruises said in a statement.
A video posted on social media by the California National Guard showed a military helicopter flying over the ship and lowering the test kits by rope.
National Guard deliver coronavirus test kits to stranded Grand Princess cruise ship off California
Coronavirus test kits were delivered to the Grand Princess cruise ship off the coast of California on Thursday, March 5, as the ship was quarantined at sea. Credit: California National Guard via Storyful
The Grand Princess was halted near San Francisco on Thursday after a traveller from a previous voyage died of the COVID-19 disease and several passengers and staff members began reporting flu-like symptoms.
The ship had travelled around Hawaii and was making its way back to port, but has now been told it cannot dock until tests confirm whether it is infected.
“The ship will not come on shore until we appropriately assess the passengers,” California Govenor Gavin Newsom said as he declared a statewide emergency on Thursday.
Awe-struck passengers watched the elaborate operation, with their phones at the ready.
“The CDC (US Centers of Disease Control) team along with test samples just air lifted from the ship,” passenger Jim Lange wrote on Instagram.
The samples were sent off to a nearby lab for processing.
Meanwhile, all passengers were asked to stay in their staterooms while the results were pending.
“Guests are receiving meal deliveries in their staterooms by room service, and additional television and movie options have been added to in-room programming,” Princess Cruises said.
“Guests have also been provided complimentary internet service to stay in contact with their family and loved ones, and the ship’s internet bandwidth has been increased.”
More to come.