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Fortescue mine worker cleared of coronavirus

A Fortescue Metals Group employee tested for COVID-19 has been cleared of the deadly virus.
Fortescue mine worker cleared of coronavirus Fortescue mine worker cleared of coronavirus Fortescue mine worker cleared of coronavirus Fortescue mine worker cleared of coronavirus Fortescue mine worker cleared of coronavirus

Staff reporter

The worker complained of flu-like symptoms this week after returning to Australia from Bali. The symptoms met the Department of Health's minimum testing criteria for coronavirus, but the test came back negative.

"This is welcome news and ensuring our workforce is healthy, safe and informed remains our number one priority," FMG said in a statement.

FMG said it had been communicating with its employees, contractors and suppliers to ensure health and hygiene practices were followed and travel guidelines understood. 

The company has asked workers who have travelled to Iran, mainland China, Italy and South Korea not to return to site or the office for at least 14 days after they have travelled. 

"We have asked team members to advise of any other overseas travel prior to returning to site," the miner said.

Non-essential travel to FMG sites has been postponed and international travel to a number of overseas countries has been restricted, in line with federal government guidelines.

Rostered flights to and from sites continue as normal and FMG does not envisage any production impact.

Employees in Shanghai and Singapore are working from home.

FMG said if any worker presented with potential COVID-19 symptoms, onsite health specialists would complete a health assessment checklist in line with World Health Organisation guidelines.

New cases of COVID-19 in China hit the lowest level since January yesterday at 120.

However, new global cases rose over 2000 for the first time, nearly triple last week's figures, with big increases coming from Italy and Iran. The global death toll has passed 3000.

In early February, FMG donated A$1 million to the Wuhan Qingshan Charity Federation to support medical efforts at the epicentre of the coronavirus outbreak in China.

CEO Elizabeth Gaines and chairman Andrew Forrest also urged Australians to show compassion towards the Chinese.

"We will look for other ways to provide meaningful help, but the little things we can do to support each other are just as important," they said on February 12.

"Like going to your local Chinese restaurant or reaching out with a hand and a smile to any Chinese person. It all sends the critical signal that we stand together."