The Alaska Marine Highway System’s new pre-boarding testing requirements exempt people who are traveling between villages on Kodiak.
Most people traveling between the Kodiak, Port Lions, Ouzinkie, Homer, Whittier and Seldovia will not need to be tested, according to Kodiak Ferry Terminal Manager Amanda Becker.
Those who do need to be tested before boarding the ferry include passengers going from Kodiak to Whittier and continuing on to Bellingham, Washington; those traveling across the Gulf of Alaska, departing Whittier for ports other than Valdez or Cordova; and those traveling to or from the Aleutian Chain with an itinerary that includes Kodiak.
“For example if you are traveling from Kodiak to Chignik you have to follow the new testing protocols or sign a sworn statement saying you have quarantined for 14 days BUT if you are traveling from Chignik to Sand Point or King Cove you do not need to get tested,” Becker wrote on a Facebook post.
The AMHS’ new testing protocols require passengers leaving Bellingham to show negative COVID-19 results from a test taken within 72 hours of departure. In addition, the Mandatory State of Alaska Traveler Declaration Form must be completed.
People traveling to Bellingham, across the Gulf of Alaska or to and from the Aleutian Chain can either show a negative COVID-19 test result from five days prior, or sign a sworn statement that affirms the traveler has followed quarantine standards for at least 14 days before travel.
“For example, those who are traveling all the way through to Bellingham on the Kennicott can get tested here in Kodiak any time after noon Wednesday and still be valid for their 2:45 p.m. departure on Monday from Whittier to Bellingham,” Becker wrote on Facebook.
All in-state passengers must complete the Passenger Screening Form and be able to respond “no” to all questions.
All passengers over 24 months of age and all crew are required to wear face coverings while onboard vessels except when in a stateroom, a designated smoking area or while eating.
“To the extent possible, AMHS will make reasonable accommodations for passengers unable to wear a face covering due to disability,” Becker wrote.
In addition, passengers and crew will not be allowed to go ashore during port calls. Passengers will only be allowed ashore upon arrival at their destination port.