Ian Payne 4am - 7am
Second London office sends staff home over suspected coronavirus
26 February 2020, 17:22
A second office in London has sent all of its staff home over fears of the coronavirus.
Workers at OMD Media, based in Fitzrovia, were sent home earlier today.
In a statement, the company said: " Earlier today, we became aware of an employee showing flu like symptoms, who had returned a few days ago from a trip to Australia with a flight connection through Singapore.
"As a precautionary measure, and until definitive results of the employee’s coronavirus test is confirmed, we are asking OMG employees at our Fitzrovia offices to immediately work from home.
"OMG UK employees have been informed that, whilst the risk of the test being positive is minimal, every precaution is being taken to protect their health and wellbeing.
"We will continue to monitor the situation and follow the guidance provided from the Government and expect to reopen these offices on Monday pending the results."
Earlier today it was revealed US oil firm Chevron told 300 staff at its City HQ to work from home after one employee who had recently returned from an affected area reported flu-like symptoms.
The worker has been sent for testing, according to the Financial Times.The firm’s staff based at the Canary Wharf office will work from home until the results are known.
The company said it would “continue to monitor the situation very closely, utilising the guidance of international and local health authorities” and it was “taking precautionary measures to reduce their risk of exposure”.
Meanwhile, schools across the UK have closed to protect against coronavirus, despite health officials recommending that they should stay open.
At least six have closed, while others have sent pupils home amid fears they may have been exposed to coronavirus during trips to northern Italy.
But Public Health England (PHE) said that its general advice is not to close schools.
The closures come after travellers returning to the UK from northern Italy were told they may need to self-isolate as part of measures to stop the spread of illness.
Fears are intensifying over the spread of coronavirus in Europe as France reported its second death and the number of people in Italy with the virus continues to climb.
Authorities in Italy have reported that the number of people infected in the country grew to 322, or up 45% in 24 hours, and 11 people have now died.
Austria, Croatia and Switzerland also reported their first cases linked to the outbreak in Italy, while Spain and France recorded new ones, also involving people who had been to northern Italy.
France recorded its second death, a 60-year-old Frenchman who died in a Paris hospital.
The first positive test in South America has also been recorded in a 61-year-old Brazilian man who had recently been to northern Italy.
More to follow...