Judge blocks transfer of suspected coronavirus patients to Orange County, California

A plan to transfer roughly 50 infected with Coronavirus to a highly populated city in Southern California’s Orange County has been temporarily halted..

SFChronicle reports a federal judge has granted a request to block temporarily the transfer of several dozen people who probably are infected with the new coronavirus from Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, where they have been under quarantine, to a closed facility in Orange County.

The judge agreed Friday with the city of Costa Mesa, which sought to stop about 50 people — recently evacuated passengers from the Diamond Princess cruise ship in Japan — from moving to the former Fairview Developmental Center.

In its request to the court, the city said it was never notified of the “11th-hour plan … to introduce people with a deadly and highly communicable disease” to Fairview. The city described the facility as a “dilapidated complex surrounded by residential neighborhoods … with no security measures to keep quarantined individuals from the residents of Costa Mesa.”

The transfer plan, the city argued, would “wreak havoc on the local economy, endangering local businesses and starving local governments of tax revenue.”

The temporary order will remain in place until Monday, when another hearing is scheduled.